Posted in Bellingham, contact lenses, Eye Blog, Medical, mountain Vernon, Optical, Sedro-Woolley, Stanwood, Whidbey


Today’s blog addresses troubles that come native improper call lens use. If girlfriend wear call lenses, space interested in trying them, or space a parent of a contact lens-wearing child, this is the short article for you. I will certainly explain clearly why proper contact lens treatment is crucial, and then give you part concrete rules to monitor so her eyes can stay protected and also healthy. Contact lens safety and security is another important subject that drops into the category of “Things That must Be Frequently-Asked Questions yet Generally Aren’t.”

Confessions the a negative contact lens user

I began wearing contact lenses when I was 12. I recognize the nice human being here at Cascadia Eye talked to me many times around the risks of my negative contact lens actions (I forever slept in them) yet I never really seemed to know how crucial good call lens habits were to my eye health. Feather back, ns am amazing that i didn’t reason permanent damages to my very own cornea–but i do understand I came close. I ultimately had to give up call lenses entirely (I had actually LASIK at 21 and now undertake glasses because that driving.)

The troubles that come with contact lens abuse

Among eye doctors and also technicians, sleeping in contact lenses and also caring because that them improperly is actually referred to as “contact lens abuse.” and also it turns out eye specialists can commonly tell if you’re one abuser, no issue what you speak at her eye exam, because your cornea (the outermost surface ar of your eye) will actually look damaged.

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Just think about that for a minute. I recognize that should have been my an initial clue that possibly my physician wasn’t exaggerating as soon as she claimed sleeping in my contacts was poor for me.

Here’s how it works:

Your cornea is one of the only areas in your body that doesn’t obtain its much-needed oxygen from blood vessels. It it s okay it native the waiting instead. When you undertake soft call lenses, a limited amount of oxygen it s okay to your eye, i beg your pardon is fine until you near those eyes for an extensive periods of time. During sleep, in between those two layers (your eyelid and the lens), no oxygen gets v at all. The doctor can tell if your cornea has actually been starved that oxygen through looking at it under magnification–swelling and small bumps dubbed “endothelial microcysts” are simply some that the symptom they can find.

If these problems go top top for too long, her eye will certainly be at boosted risk of eye infection and also corneal ulcers (open sores top top the cornea). Physicians say me that when they acquire a phone contact from the ER because that a patient through a bad eye epidemic or a possible corneal ulcer, the first question castle ask is if the patient has actually been sleeping in his or her contact lenses. Nine times out of ten the price is, “Why yes, how did you know?”

Aside native being fairly painful, these problems can even get serious sufficient to reason permanent blindness. Not cleaning your call lenses, or utilizing the wrong equipment (or tap water) to execute so, can additionally lead to infection and ulcers. Ns will deal with all of these points in the rule below.

Contact lenses the don’t right properly additionally present their own troubles of discomfort and damage. Her eye has actually a distinctive curvature. One call lens does no fit every eyes, i m sorry is why you need to always have a complete fitting through a skilled to discover a brand and also style the matches the form of her eye most comfortably. Therefore:

Rule 1: constantly have a expert involved.

Even if friend don’t need prescription call lenses, you can want them for cosmetic purposes. It might be crazy cat-eyes because that Halloween, or maybe you simply want to readjust your eye shade for a day. You could just order call lenses digital for that type of thing…but you shouldn’t.


Instead, enable yourself an extra month prior to your costumed event and also get a suitable fitting native an eye medical professional (which usually contains several visits.) I know Cascadia Eye will perform fittings for Wild Eyes and other cosmetic brands–my sister, a cosplayer in ~ anime, comic, and pop-culture conventions, has made species in the previous to have the clinic watch at she specialty lenses to make sure they don’t damage her eyes.

As secondary bonus, a familiar technician or physician will constantly be over there to explain the appropriate care and use of call lenses, such as:

Rule 2: Don’t sleep in your call lenses (unless they space designed because that it.)


I may have mentioned this before. Now, many civilization can’t was standing the emotion of contact lenses that have essentially dried onto their eyes overnight. The is a great thing. However take it from one who knows: if girlfriend don’t care around the sticky or irritated feeling that comes from sleeping in contacts, “forgetting” to take them out at night appears awfully convenient. You wake up up able to see! friend don’t need to haul solution and whatnot follow me on trips! It’s one much less thing to have to remember v your nightly routine! (Or probably that one is just a “me” problem?) At any rate, no matter how much easier it appears or exactly how forgetful girlfriend are, you simply can’t afford to let it become a irreversible habit. If you find it impossible to remember no matter how tough you try, climate you might need to give up on contact lenses totally like ns did. Your sight is more important than preventing inconveniences.

Rule 3: treatment for your contact lenses properly.


If you’ve acquired a appropriate fitting, the technician or doctor has likely currently explained the require for instead of your call lenses at continuous intervals (which vary relying on brand and type) and also cleaning lock daily. Dr. Roslyn Howell, our contact lens specialist, advises you come throw the end your contact lens storage case at the very least every three months to stop nasty things from growing there. Never ever use saline systems or any type of kind that water to save your lenses. You have the right to use a no-rub solution to clean them, however Dr. VanNurden also advises girlfriend to usage a tenderness rub through your fingers as component of your daily care. Don’t ever before reuse solution or “top the up” from her last use–always change it completely with new solution.

Rule 4: If there space problems…

Take out your contact lenses immediately and also make an appointment with your eye doctor. If you develop a red eye or itching, burning, swelling, or pain: don’t just wait because that it to go away. An infection will certainly only gain worse through time. A corneal ulcer needs clinical attention. For much more information, walk here. Or friend can constantly call us and ask!

In short: contact lenses can reason permanent damages if provided improperly. Don’t sleep in them; Clean daily; replace regularly; preserve correctly; always get your contacts professionally fitted.

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