DAN Medical Frequently Asked Questions

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Diving with Contacts

What are the best contact lenses to wear underwater?

Divers who wish to wear contact lenses while diving should ask their ophthalmologists or optometrists to prescribe "soft" contact lenses. "Hard" lenses or rigid gas-permeable lenses, the other two commonly prescribed types of lenses, have been found to sometimes cause symptoms of eye pain and blurred vision during and after dives, in which the diver accumulates a significant inert gas load. These symptoms occur as a result of gas bubbles forming between the cornea and the contact lens.

For more information on vision issues, see the complete article by Frank K. Butler Jr., Captain, Medical Corps, United States Navy on High-Pressure Ophthalmology from Alert Diver.