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Contact Lenses Q&A with Dr. DiMartino

We spoke with Dr. Lynn DiMartino of Battle Creek Eye Clinic, a contact lens expert in Battle Creek, MI, to get answers to some of the most common questions about contact lenses.

Who can wear contact lenses and at what age can you start?

We have fit children as young as 8 years old with contacts. We listen to their parents as far as whether a child is responsible enough at a young age to wear contacts.

Are glasses better for my eyes than contact lenses?

Glasses are not necessarily better for your eyes than contacts if the contacts are maintained according to the eye doctor's instructions concerning being worn on a daily wear basis, digital cleaning and disinfecting the contacts every day and being diligent about the replacement schedule of the contacts.

Is wearing contacts better for sports activity?

Wearing contacts is far superior to wearing glasses for sports. Contacts give better depth perception, can't get bumped or knocked off during play and give better peripheral vision.

Should I see an optometrist or an ophthalmologist for my first pair of contacts?

An optometrist is the primary care eye doctor so seeing an optometrist in Battle Creek for a contact lens exam is a great idea!

About five years ago, I was told I was not a good candidate for contacts. I have odd shaped eyes. Are there new options available today?

Toric contacts are designed to correct astigmatism (odd shaped eyes) and are very successful with a multitude of powers to fit most patients' prescriptions.

Do you carry contacts that can change my eye color?

We sure do! We have either tinted lenses that can change or enhance a lighter colored iris or opaque contacts that can change a brown iris to blue, green or any desired color.

Can I sleep with my contacts? How often should I be changing them?

We do not recommend sleeping in your contacts. It is always healthier for your eyes to take your contacts out at night. There are different contacts with different replacement schedules like a 1 day, 2 week, 1 month or a 3 month replacement schedule. It's best to discuss with your doctor your needs during your contact lens eye exam to determine the best wearing schedule for you.

I am worried about putting my finger in my eye. How does someone get used to this?

At the dispensing of the contacts we work with you to become comfortable inserting and removing your contacts and give helpful suggestions to making it easier and of course -practice helps tremendously. You eventually learn your own technique and can insert and remove contacts the first time every time.

I had an eye exam about 8 months ago. Do I need a separate exam in order to get contacts?

There are additional tests that are run when contacts are desired like determining the shape of the eye but you will not need an entirely new exam only a few additional tests and a fitting of the contacts on the eyes.

Can I swim with contacts in?

You could wear a 1 day disposable contact to swim in if you didn't go underwater and planned on throwing them away after swimming. The contacts shouldn't be exposed to pool or lake water and left in the eye because that would cause eye irritation.