There’s no getting away from the fact that wearing contact lenses do take some getting used to. After all, you are putting your correction equipment into your eyes rather than simply slipping something over your nose. However, the good news is that most people can adjust to wearing contact lenses fairly easily.
Here are our top tips for switching from glasses to contact lenses.
Unless, after the settling in period, they are 100% comfortable and your contact lens doctor is happy with them, don’t necessarily settle on the first contact lenses that you try. There are dozens of different types, all of which have slight variations that can make them better suited to some patients than others.
Any good contact lens provider should give you a free trial/settling in period, after which time they invite you back to assess your eyes and to ask you how you got on with them. If you found your lenses irritating or uncomfortable, it may be that a different brand or variety is better suited to you needs. Your contact lens provider should work with you to ensure that you find the contact lens that gives you the perfect balance of seamless vision and optimal comfort.
Many people are under the misconception that if you choose to wear contact lenses, you need to wear them every day. However, this isn’t the case at all. Some people prefer to wear them all day every day, while others choose to only wear contact lenses on special occasions, or when wearing glasses is inconvenient.
Understanding your wearing pattern will also help you to pick the right lenses for you. You can choose from daily disposables (which as their name suggests, are worn once and then discarded) to monthly lenses that are taken out and cleaned overnight and then worn again. Your contact lens provider will be able to work with you to recommend the right wearing pattern and lens type to suit your lifestyle.
The biggest risk associated with wearing contact lenses is infection. Our eyes are extremely sensitive, and transferring even the smallest particles of dust, debris or harmful microorganisms into your eye could trigger all sorts of problems, including sight-threatening level infections. You should always wash your hands before and after applying contacts. You should also make sure that your eyes are clean and free from cosmetics, fake lashes etc.
As we said before, wearing contact lenses can take some getting used to. You’ll be advised by your eye doctor to slowly and gradually build up your time wearing them, rather than popping them in for 12 hours the very first day. Start by wearing them for just a handful of hours, and provided you don’t have problems, you can start wearing them for longer and longer each day, until you have them in from morning until night.
One of the most important pieces of advice your contact lens provider will give you will be to not wear them in water. Water can contain microscopic organisms which can get trapped under the contact lens and cause irritation and infection. Some types of water (such as chlorinated water you might find in the pool) even contain chemicals that can cause the material of your contacts to perish quickly.
Sleeping in your contact lenses is a big no-no too. Not only are contacts not designed to be worn for that long, but they longer they are in, the more they will dehydrate the surface of your eyes, causing them to feel dry, tight and uncomfortable. Wearing your contact lenses while you sleep will also increase your risk of developing an eye infection or other problem.
For more on managing dry eye while wearing contact lenses, call Professional Eye Care at Westar at (614) 686-2300 for our office in Westerville, Ohio.