Scleral Contact Lenses

If you are interested in wearing contact lenses but have been told in the past that you aren’t a suitable candidate to wear standard contact lenses or have had trouble wearing them in the past, then scleral contact lenses may be a good option for you.

Standard contact lenses may not be the best option for everyone, including those with keratoconus, dry eye, or other conditions in which a person is advised against wearing contact lenses. In cases like these, scleral contact lenses may be a suitable alternative.

What are Scleral Contact Lenses?

Scleral contact lenses are large-diameter rigid gas permeable lenses designed to vault over the entire front surface of the eye and rest on the sclera, otherwise known as the white part of the eye. Even though scleral lenses are rigid gas permeable lenses, they tend to be more comfortable then regular RGP lenses because they are larger and rest on the sclera, the white part of the eye, which tends to be less sensitive than the cornea.

Patients often report that wearing scleral contact lenses offers sharper vision compared to wearing standard contact lenses. Scleral lenses are very durable, easy to handle, and tend to be more stable on the eye than standard contact lenses, which means they are less likely to slide out of place on the eye, making them feel more comfortable for patients. They are also constructed with materials which allow high amounts of oxygen to pass through to the cornea, and this also contributes to the comfort many feel when wearing scleral contact lenses.

Am I a Candidate for Scleral Contact Lenses?

Technically anyone who is interested in the sharpest possible vision with contact lenses is a candidate for scleral contact lenses!

But if you have one or more of the following conditions, then scleral contact lenses may be the most suitable option.

Dry eye disease

If you have chronic dry eye disease, then you may find wearing standard contact lenses to be very uncomfortable. Since scleral contact lenses vault over the front surface of the eye, there is a small space in which a reservoir for tears is created, providing a cushion of moisture for the front surface of the eye.


If you have a moderate to severe case of astigmatism, then you may have found that standard contact lenses don’t provide the clearest, sharpest vision for you. Scleral contact lenses are stable due to their size, and the liquid under the scleral lenses can compensate for the astigmatism.

Post-Surgical Complications

If you have experienced complications after eye surgery, then you may have found that wearing standard contact lenses doesn’t provide you with the vision correction you need. Since scleral contact lenses vault over the entire front surface of the eye, they will provide you with the sharp vision correction needed.  


Keratoconus is an eye disease which affects the structure of the cornea, the front surface of the eye. It causes the cornea to become thin, and irregular (cone) shaped. The abnormal shape of the cornea prevents light from being focused correctly on the retina and causes distorted vision. It is typically diagnosed childhood or the teenage years and continues to progress until the mid-thirties or so.

During the early stages of keratoconus, eyeglasses are sufficient to provide vision correction, but as the disease progresses, scleral contact lenses can provide sharper vision correction because they essentially replace the front surface of the eye and focus light correctly on the retina.


If you frequently play sports and are very active, then you may find that standard contact lenses tend to be uncomfortable because they are too easily dislodged, or because they slide around on your eyes. Scleral contact lenses are much more stable than standard contact lenses, so it’s harder for them to become dislodged from your eyes or slide around on your eyes, offering you sharp vision during sports.

Interested in Scleral Contact Lenses? Book an Appointment for a Comprehensive Eye Exam with Ensight Eyecare today!