If your teenager wears glasses, don’t be surprised if they eventually ask you about getting contact lenses. Some young people are tired of hunting for their glasses in the morning while others are worried about breaking their frames while playing sports or simply want the freedom that contacts can represent.
Should you let them make the switch? Or are contact lenses better suited to older teens?
At UOptical, we get these questions a lot from parents, so we’re sharing some insights on how to know when your teen is ready to wear contact lenses.
What is the Minimum Age for Wearing Contacts?
Now that contact lens care is easier and more convenient than ever, wearing contacts has become more feasible for teens, preteens, and even children. According to the Canadian Association of Optometrists, children as young as eight years old can successfully handle contact lenses after getting appropriate instructions on putting them in, taking them out, and caring for them.
In the end, your child’s age alone shouldn’t guide your decision. It’s more about their ability to manage the responsibility of wearing contacts.
How Responsible is Your Teen?
When considering contacts, think about your child’s maturity level. To maintain eye health and reduce their risk of developing infections, they must clean and care for their lenses properly.
Answer this question: is your teenager capable of following instructions without needing you to constantly remind them? If so, they’re probably ready to maintain the necessary care routine for contacts. On the other hand, if you have to keep following up any time you ask them to do something, it may be better to wait.
The Advantages of Wearing Contacts
Although glasses can be a stylish accessory, there are a few advantages that go with wearing contact lenses.
If your teen participates in sports, contacts are a lot less likely to be damaged than glasses. In addition, if their favourite sport requires them to wear safety goggles, it’s a lot more comfortable and convenient to put them on over contacts as opposed to eyeglasses. Unlike glasses, contacts also don’t fog up and distort vision during a game.
Other advantages include:
- Although a contact lens can tear, glasses are a lot easier to break and can be more expensive to replace.
- Contacts make it easier to participate in activities like dancing, skating, and gymnastics.
Remember to Set Important Rules
If your teenager wears contacts, make sure he or she understands that responsible behaviour is required. Here are a few important rules to go over.
- Follow the eye doctor’s instructions on how to wear and care for their contacts.
- Tell you if their eyes become irritated or if vision becomes blurred after lens wear.
- Never swap contact lenses with someone else.
Are You Thinking About Getting Contacts for Your Teen?
If you’re confident that your teenager is ready to wear contact lenses, the eye specialists at UOptical can fit them with a prescription that gives them the clear and crisp vision they need to take advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead. To learn more or schedule an appointment, call (416) 292-0075 or contact us online.