Contact Lenses For People With Dry Eyes

Have you noticed that functioning in general is harder? Learn why visiting an optometrist may help you find the source of the problem.

Contact Lenses For People With Dry Eyes

12 January 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Some people suffer from a condition known as chronic dry eye. This condition causes the eyes to become extremely dry very easily, and is often because of a lack of tear production, which helps keep the eyes moist. If you have dry eyes, it may be hard to keep your contact lenses in due to the irritation they can cause. If you need corrective lenses and want to continue to wear contacts, here are some things your eye doctor can do to help.

Different Lens Types

Traditional contact lenses can exacerbate dry eye symptoms. New, softer lenses are now available that are made specifically with dry eye patients in mind. The lenses are thinner which allows the eyes to breathe better. They can also let the eyes retain moisture better, helping people with dry eyes be able to wear their contact lenses for a longer period of time without any discomfort. Gas permeable lenses can also help people with dry eye since they do not absorb moisture that comes from your eyes naturally like most contact lenses. 

Treatment Options

There are some treatment options available for those who deal with chronic dry eye. It is best to treat your eyes before you get fitted for contact lenses so you can be sure the treatment is working correctly. Some prescription medications are available that help the eyes mimic the production of real tears, keeping them moist and comfortable. Eye drops are also available to use that can keep your eyes moisturized. Another more complex option for treatment is something called a punctal plug. This tiny device is made of silicone or collagen, and it is placed into your tear drainage ducts. When the plug is inserted, it helps to block the tears from leaving your eyes' surface. When natural tears are coating your eyes, the symptoms of dry eye should be reduced or even eliminated, allowing you to wear contact lenses normally. 

Contact Cleaning Solutions

In some cases, the issue may not be with the lenses themselves, but rather the solution being used to keep them clean. Some manufacturers make cleaners that contain chemicals and preservatives that can irritate the eyes and make them dry. Others might not work with your particular type of lens, causing an unwanted reaction. Make sure the cleansing solution you are using contains additives that will promote moisture production and keep the dryness at bay. No matter what you choose to do to improve your contact lens situation, you should always talk with an eye doctor like Robert A. Marini, OD so they can help you make a better choice for your dry eye condition.