Eye Center of Texas Blog

Contacts or LASIK: Which is Best for You?


Contacts vs. LASIK, these two options have long vied for the honor of being labelled the “best” vision correction treatment out there. The majority of concerns that patients raise are related to cost and safety. Contact lens wearers often ask, “is LASIK safer than contact lenses?” and “is LASIK more expensive than contact lenses?”

Historically, contact lenses were the preferred vision correction choice for a variety of reasons. Today, however, LASIK performs the same functions as contacts but with a much lower risk of permanent damage to your eyes via scarring and oxygen deprivation. If your contacts irritate your eyes or you’re just annoyed by having to put contacts in everyday, LASIK could be a good alternative vision correction choice for you.

The cost of contacts vs. LASIK

Many patients looking to switch from contacts to LASIK or vice versa start by comparing the costs of LASIK and contacts. These patients are often shocked by what they find. In particular, the the cost of LASIK in Houston might pleasantly surprise you.

Consider the following:

Did you know that wearing contacts is akin to renting clearer vision? When you buy a new box of contacts each month, it’s as if you’re renewing the lease on your clear vision. Those costs add up quickly.

  • You spend $100 a month on contacts
  • $100 X 12 months = $1,200 spent per year on contacts
  • You wear contacts from age 15 to age 60: 45 years
  • 45 years X $1,200 = $54,000

That’s a lot of money to pay for temporary vision correction. Yet while cost is an important factor to consider in your research, the difference in safety between contacts vs. LASIK is what’s truly impressive.

Inherent risks with wearing contacts

The convenience of LASIK over contacts is what drives many patients to seek laser vision correction. But besides just being a plain old nuisance, contacts have risks inherent to their use. Even with proper care, long-term wear of contact lenses causes complications. Corneal abrasions are caused by tiny bits of detritus getting stuck in contacts. Even the most diligent of contact wearers can miss a tiny bit of lint or dust that gets caught in their lenses. These corneal abrasions can lead to eye infection or even scarring of the eyes.

Additionally, corneal abrasions decrease corneal thickness as a whole, increase the corneal curvature, and increase surface irregularity. All of these complications mean that the more that you wear contacts, the more you will need to increase your vision correction needs.

Wearer-caused contact complications

Many contact-related eye issues stem from the contact lens wearers themselves. For example, many patients don’t wear their contact lenses as prescribed.

Contact lens users sometimes wear their contacts beyond their recommended life span in an attempt to save on costs, which can exacerbate the inherent risks mentioned previously. It’s also common for contact wearers to sleep in their contacts. When you sleep in your contacts, your eyes are deprived of oxygen. Your eyes need oxygen to function and usually get that oxygen from the surrounding atmosphere while you’re awake, and from the blood vessels on the back of your eyelid when you’re asleep. Contacts act as a physical barrier to these processes, even with advances the oxygen transmission in contact lenses.

Both wearing your contacts past their recommended life span and wearing your contacts while you sleep are extremely harmful to your eye’s health, and may eventually cost you your vision.

LASIK is safer than contacts

When prospective patients ask, “Is LASIK safe?” they learn that LASIK can actually be less risky than contacts. With LASIK, you get a custom, personalized procedure that is unique to your vision needs. Complications from contact lens use affect 5% of users yearly, while experienced LASIK surgeons report a rate of complications under 1%.

LASIK eye surgery in Houston is a safe, painless alternative to contact lenses. Thanks to the experienced LASIK eye surgeons in Houston, Eye Center of Texas has performed over 70,000 successful LASIK procedures and is recommended by more than 275 Houston area eye doctors.

What’s right for me, contacts or LASIK?

Why pay for “vision rental” that is ultimately less healthy for your eyes when you could buy safer, permanent vision correction? If you’re wondering, “am I a good candidate for LASIK?” the best way to find out is to get a free LASIK consultation at Eye Center of Texas. You can discuss with our doctors on the risks and whether or not LASIK is the best choice for your vision correction.

Throw away the contacts for good and wake up every day with clear eyes. Join the tens of thousands of Texans who have come to Eye Center of Texas for their successful LASIK procedure.

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Bellaire, TX 77401

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