LASIK vs. Contact Lenses: Which Is Right for You?

by: Advanced Laser | October 22, 2015

Close-up of a woman placing a contact in the right eyeIf one surgery, LASIK, could make your day-to-day life simpler, is it worth the change from contacts? LASIK, which stands for laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis, is a quick, outpatient surgery that allows surgeons to reshape the cornea and improve how the eye focuses light on the retina. This procedure can permanently improve vision for nearsighted, farsighted, and astigmatic patients.

If you are trying to decide if LASIK or contact lenses are right for you, the team at Advanced Laser & Cataract Center Oklahoma provides patients with the information they need to make an informed decision. This blog post offers an overview of the pros and cons of LASIK and contact lenses. To learn more about LASIK vs. contact lenses, contact our Oklahoma City, OK practice today.

The Results

Most LASIK patients achieve vision 20/20 and no longer depend on glasses or contact lenses after surgery. However, some patients may require a second enhancement procedure to achieve these results. Others may have to wear glasses for some activities, even after LASIK; for example, once a patient reaches his or her 40s, he or she may require reading glasses.

LASIK also results in some temporary side effects after surgery. Some patients experience blurry vision, difficulty seeing well at night, sensitivity to light, dry eye, or halos or starbursts in the weeks after LASIK. These issues are usually short-term and subside quickly.

Contact lenses provide similar results as LASIK surgery. However, they require patients to insert and remove the contacts daily, and maintain them with proper cleaning techniques.

Comfort and Ease

For most patients, LASIK corrects vision so that post-operative glasses or contact lenses are not necessary. If you spend time and money maintaining your contacts, or you have eye allergies, LASIK could be a great investment. Imagine waking up each morning and not having to put in your contact lenses. Imagine not having to purchase contact lenses and care products. What if you never had to worry about losing a contact at an inopportune time? For many, LASIK poses an attractive alternative to contact lenses because of the improved comfort and elimination of hassle.

The Safety Debate

For years, experts believed that contact lenses were safer than LASIK. After all, LASIK is a surgery, and all surgeries come with some risk. Some research shows, the risk for vision impairment following LASIK is less than the risk of eye infection for contact lens wearers. The data reveals that LASIK is actually three and one-half times safer than contacts (Casey Eye Institute, Portland OR).

Cost Comparison

If you consider the cost of caring for and maintaining contact lenses and glasses, compared to the cost of LASIK, you’ll find that LASIK pays for itself in approximately seven years (average costs). This takes into account the costs of contact lenses or glasses (lenses and frames), care products, eye exams, and emergency optometrist visits should you develop eye irritation or an infection. Here’s even better news: after that first seven years, you still won’t have the expense of contacts and glasses, yet you’ll enjoy the results of LASIK.

Find Out If LASIK or Contacts Are Best for You

For a comprehensive eye exam, and to learn more about whether LASIK is a good option to permanently correct your vision, call us today to schedule an appointment. We welcome new patients and will be happy to help you achieve optimal vision with minimal hassle.