Around 45 million people in the United States wear contact lenses.
Contact lenses are a great way to improve your vision without changing your appearance and while still being able to enjoy your favorite activities without interruption, such as swimming or skiing.
However, wearing contact lenses takes a bit of extra work. Besides your regular annual eye exam that anyone in need of corrective lenses should have, you’ll also need to have regular contact lens exams.
These exams are important for getting the right contact prescription and for checking on any issues that may arise.
However, when you’re already paying for eye exams and contact lens, an exam can seem like yet another cost to deal with.
If you’re ready to renew your prescription or try contacts for the first time, keep reading to learn how to get cheap contact lens exams.
Why are Contact Lens Exams Important?
Healthy adults with no vision problems need just one or two eye exams every 10 years in their 20s and 30s, and exams more frequently as they get older.
But if you do have vision problems and wear contact lenses or glasses to correct it, you need to visit your eye doctor much more frequently.
If you already see an eye doctor for a regular exam, you might be wondering why contact lens exams are even necessary. After all, your doctor checks your vision for signs of changes or other problems.
However, contact lens exams are just as important as your regular exam.
If you are brand new to wearing contacts, your contact lens exam is a chance to get fitted for the right lenses. Not all lenses are created equal. The shape and size of your eye might affect the fit, and finding the right fit is essential.
During your exam, you’ll also learn how to put them in properly, how to store your contacts, how often to replace them, and more.
Understanding how to wear contacts safely is very important. Improper handling can lead to very serious eye infections. These may even affect your vision long-term.
Even if you aren’t new to contacts, you still need regular contact lens exams.
During these exams, your doctor will check to see if your contact lens prescription and type of lens are still working for you. They might suggest new lenses made with better technology, or recommend changing the types of contact lenses you wear as your needs and activities change.
Calculating the Cost for a Contact Lens Exam
When you’re already paying for an annual eye doctor appointment, the price of a contact lens exam might tempt you to skip this type of exam.
However, the cost of a contact lens exam is well worth the investment. This exam is a chance to ensure that you’re choosing the right contacts and the right fit for your eyes.
There are a number of factors that go into the cost of an eye exam.
Besides the cost of your doctor’s time to help get the right fit, the cost of your exam may also cover additional tests and evaluations needed to check the shape of your eye or any underlying problems that you might be facing.
For instance, when you are new to wearing contacts, your eye doctor will likely run a corneal topography test during your first contact lens exam.
This test takes a close look at your cornea, and specifically its shape. Because your contact lens will rest on your eye’s cornea when inserted, checking the curve of your cornea is essential to getting the right fit.
Another test that your eye doctor may run during a contact lens exam is a slit lamp examination. This test is typically run during your normal eye doctor visit, but may be run again during a contact lens exam. That’s because this test is very important for identifying potential medical problems that could affect your ability to wear contacts.
A slip lamp is used to check various structures within the eye. This includes your cornea, iris, and lens.
During your contact lens exam, you’ll also likely receive a trial pair of contacts. You’ll get to try these on during your visit to check the fit and comfort of the lenses.
However, if you have an unusual prescription, require special contacts designed to work with certain eye conditions, or are getting cosmetic lenses, samples to try during your exam may not be available.
How to Get Cheap Contact Lens Exams
While you shouldn’t skip your next appointment, it is possible to save some money on the price of a contact lens exam.
One great way to do so is to shop around.
Check with optometrists in your area to find the best deal. However, don’t sacrifice the quality of the visit you receive just to save a few dollars.
The health of your eyes and your vision are important and are never something to skimp on.
Another great way to save some money is to look for any specials that may be available.
While these may not lower the actual cost of your contact lens exam, they may help you save in other areas. Getting a good deal on glasses or contact lenses can help to offset the cost of your exam, saving you some money.
This is especially important if you know that you’ll need to order both contacts and new glasses during on visit to your eye doctor.
Scheduling Your Next Exam
Getting cheap contact lens exams or saving on other costs, like contacts or glasses, is easier than you might think.
Whether you’re ready for your next eye exam or contact lens exam or need to order glasses or contacts, we can help. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment!