Purchasing Contact Lenses OnlinePurchasing contact lenses online is not without its risks. It is important to remember that every contact lens product is unique and designed for a particular purpose. This includes everything from material, curvature, fit, oxygen permeability, deposit resistance, moisture content and lifespan. Just because you have a prescription (new or old) does not mean you will get the appropriate product for your unique eyes. It is important to remember that contact lenses are medical devices that sit directly on your eyes and can cause problems if improperly fit or monitored.There are a number of risks associated with online ordering:
Some sites do not verify the prescription. Without proper verification, one risks wearing an optically incorrect or improperly fitting lens. Many online sites (including those based in Canada) sell product that has not been approved by Health Canada. The safety of these lenses has not been tested. Lenses from overseas may be exposed to large temperature changes in uncontrolled warehouses or transportation vessels. This can affect the integrity of the lenses which can lead to potential eye health issues. Overseas distribution channels may have grey market (counterfeit) product. There are no controls to ensure that internet sites only source lenses directly from the manufacturer. Replacement and exchange privileges may not be possible with an online vendor. By working with your optometrist, you can ensure: The proper contact lens prescription, curvature, and modality based on lifestyle needs, and measurements of your eye curvature, tear chemistry, and prescription. The appropriate selection of care system based on compatibility with different lens materials and compatibility with your eyes. Professional monitoring to ensure optimum eye health, good vision, and comfortable wear. Updates with new lens technology that may better suit your particular vision needs or lifestyle demands.
The OAO advises those who wish to purchase online to follow these guidelines:
Order only from trusted sites that source their lenses directly from the manufacturer. Report any differences from the original packaging to your optometrist. Seek immediate care if you experience any discomfort or vision change. Use only the care system recommended by your eye care professional. Ensure you see your optometrist annually to monitor the health of your eyes.
Contact your optometrist for more information regarding your contact lens needs.