Contact Lenses for Dry Eyes

I am Dr. Anin Sethi, and today I will talk about contact lenses for dry eyes

Lenses for people with dry eye disease. 

Specifically, we will be learning about the type of contact lenses for people with dry eyes or those who have dry eyes.  It is seen that the people who have dry eye disease experience red eyes or dry eyes, itchy eyes, and sensation like there’s a foreign body in your eyes when they wear contact lenses. However, these symptoms mentioned before can be caused even if the person does not have dry eye disease. 

Soft contact lenses are the first preference for people with dry eye disease. Preferably, Soft contact lenses with moderate water content, i.e., silicon hydrogen lenses. Mostly nowadays, doctors recommend silicon hydrogen lenses.

Daily disposable lenses or monthly disposable lenses? 

You should keep in mind to use daily disposable lenses over monthly disposable lenses. The monthly disposable lenses need a lot of maintenance. You need to take proper extra care of them and clean it. It should be kept in a cleaning solution overnight for 6-8 hours. People with dry eyes who use monthly disposable lenses often suffer from protein deposition, risk of infection, etc. 

If you have dry eyes and are getting your treatment for it, you now want to wear lenses. Then you should opt for daily disposable lenses. Being a little expensive, they reduce the risk of infections. In addition, you don’t have to keep cleaning them always. You don’t even have to store it anywhere. You can wear it for 6-8 hours and then throw it. 

How to take care of your lenses?

If you use monthly disposable lenses and experience dry eyes, then remove them anytime and put them in the cleaning solution for 10 minutes. If you experience a protein deposit, take the cleaning solution in your hand, dip the contact lenses for about 20 seconds, and rub gently. You mustn’t do it for more than 20 secs. 

If you still have dry eyes after doing all this, you can use artificial tears—preservative artificial tears or lubricant like Systane ultra. Or you can use Genteal eye drops. There are more eye drops like these that you can use with contact lenses. 

Do not wear contact lenses for longer than the recommended time. For example, if you wear contact lenses for more than 8 hours, they might dry and irritate your eyes. These are the things you should keep in mind. Even the extended usage type lenses are not recommended to be worn overnight, regardless if you have dry eyes or not. 

If, after doing all the things mentioned, you experience irritation or dry eyes, then the first thing you should do is consult an ophthalmologist. And the second thing is to keep in mind the environmental factors factor like you would find it difficult to wear contact lenses in dry weather. In this case, you can work in an office or room where you can keep a humidifier and maintain the moisture in the space. Even after all these precautions, you are unable to tolerate lenses. Then you should consult an ophthalmologist. He will give you a different type of lens, Rigid Gas permeable contact lenses. The patient has to visit the doctor a couple of times for the fitting of the lens. 

And not everyone is comfortable with these lenses. 

The immediate solution to this is soft contact lenses. If it is very necessary to wear contact lenses and not wear them, then Rigid Gas permeable lenses are the answer. Do consult your eye specialist. If you still are unable to wear contact lenses then wearing glasses would be a better option for you. You can wear lenses occasionally for a short period of time.  Thank you. 

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