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Approximately 27 million Americans wear contact lenses. The majority use these devices to correct vision as an alternative to glasses. Approximately 85% use soft lenses because of the superior comfort they provide. Contact lenses fit over the cornea, the transparent outter coating of the eye. Soft lenses are made of hydrophilic (water loving) plastics that absorb fluid. When these materials soak up water, they become supple and soft. The water content can vary from 37% to 80%. Soft lenses are used to correct nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and some degrees of astigmatism. Soft lenses may also be prescribed following cataract surgery for vision correction.

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