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Dry Eye with Contact lens

Dry Eye and Contact Lenses

Normal vision requires a moist healthy ocular surface. This was affected by several factors which include sufficient quality of tears, a normal composition of the tear film, normal lid closure, and regular blinking.

Dry eye syndrome or dry eye (also known as Keratoconjunctivitis sicca) occurs when there is a problem with the tear film that normally keeps the eye moist and lubricated. Clinically, it is considered to be an ocular surface disease that associated with tear film deficiencies or a poorly functioning tear film. The eye becomes dry either because there are not enough tears being produced or because there is abnormally high rate of evaporation of tears.

Contact lens intolerance or wrong selection of contact lenses or wrong type of contact lenses  is often a consequence of dry eye. Studies show that up to 50% of soft contact lens wearers complain of dryness. Dryness is the primary reason why people permanently discontinue contact lens wear. Some clinical studies have indicated that preservatives used in multipurpose solutions can contribute to discomfort and dryness in contact lens wearers.  It was found that the majority of the subjects experienced increased comfort and reduced symptoms of dryness with the Hydrogen peroxide solution such as Ever Clean as compared to the multipurpose solutions.

Symptoms of dry eye may occur when the cornea and the conjunctiva do not have enough hydration and lubrication to function normally. The common symptoms reported due to dry eyes include the following:

  • Burning
  • Stinging
  • Gritty sandy feeling (foreign body sensation)
  • Itching
  • Photophobia (light sensitive)
  • Excessive tearing

Dry eyes can affect anyone, but it becomes more common with increasing age (Brewitt, H. et. al., 2001). A dry eye affects about 7 % people in their 50s, and about 15 % people in their 70s. Old people tend to produce lower tear volume. Women are affected more often than men (Lee, A.J. et. al., 2002). When our eyes are dry, this will cause irritation and discomfort and so more lacrimal tears will be produce to irrigate the eyes. Thus, epiphora or tearing of eyes are commonly seen among dry eye patients.

In dealing with dry eyes syndrome, the goals of treating dry eyes are to control the dryness of the eye, relieve symptoms, improve quality of life, minimize risk factors and prevent ocular damage. Though dry eyes cannot be cured, there are a number of steps that can be taken to treat them. The first –line treatment for dry eyes is the use of artificial eye drops every few hours. As for long-standing dry eyes, it is important to use the drops even when your eyes feel fine, to keep them lubricated. Meanwhile, in severe cases when the eyedrops not longer provide relief from the symptoms of dry eyes, patient was advised to seek for ophthalmologist.

Thankfully, if you suffer from dry eye symptoms when wearing contacts, today there are many lens care products and new types of lenses available, and the right combination of these products often can improve the comfort of wearing contacts.

Fixing the problem starts with a visit to Malaya Optical @Damansara Uptown and Subang SS15 so that our Eye Care Professional (Optometrist) can evaluate the cause of your contact lens-related dry eye symptoms and determine the best solution to increase your wearing comfort. Sometimes contact lens wearers avoid talking about discomfort for fear that they’ll be told they can’t wear contacts any longer. But with today’s variety of contact lens products, the need to discontinue contact lens wear altogether is very unlikely.

Malaya Optical provide you a better contact lens choice and suitable lens care solution accordingly. We carry a huge range of solutions such as OptiFree, Renu, Solocare, Complete and etc. However, for more revolutionary multipurpose solution we carry the Hyaluronate contact lens – Safegel and Avizor lens care solution, please refer to our blog on Safegel and Hydrogen Peroxide Solution.

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Professional Optometrist & Designer Eyewear