Contact lenses are not an easy solution for every person suffering from vision problems. Some eye conditions make wearing contacts a difficult proposition. However, it does not rule out wearing contact lenses altogether. It just means patients need to discuss options with their eye care professional to customize a plan for their specific vision problems.
Finding contact lenses that fit and wearing contact lenses, in general, can be made more challenging when these conditions affect your eyes:
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis (GPC)
Astigmatism: Astigmatism is very common and develops when the front of the eye curves into a bulge or oval shape. It causes blurred vision and can be difficult to correct because regular spherical soft contacts cannot account for the shape of the eye.
Dry Eyes: When eyes become excessively dry, it leads to irritation, burning, redness and blurred vision. Certain types of contact lenses can exacerbate these conditions by making it feel like a foreign object is stuck in your eye and others are prescribed specifically for dryness in severe cases.
GPC: This form of conjunctivitis is caused by inflammation on the inner surface of the eyelid. Protein buildup on contact lenses can make this condition worse.
Presbyopia: Eyes tend to have a tougher time focusing on close objects as they age. This condition is known as presbyopia. It typically affects people aged 40 or older.
Keratoconus: This is an uncommon condition that causes major problems for wearing typical soft contacts. Keratoconus happens when the cornea becomes thinner and begins to bulge forward into a cone shape. The result is a type of astigmatism that requires a hard lens to correct vision.
Wearing contacts is not impossible if you suffer from one of the above conditions. You do need to meet with an eye care professional, however, and get prescribed contact lenses that are customized to your specific vision condition.
Gas permeable lenses are a good solution for patients who suffer from GPC or Keratoconus. A GP lens will limit protein deposits from accumulating which will reduce GPC symptoms. It is also believed to be an effective solution in containing corneal bulging and relieving pressure on the tissue for a Keratoconus sufferer. However technological advances have led to the re-emergence of scleral lenses and in many cases are required to preserve the health of the eye in addition to providing a comfortable and accurate vision correction modality.
Toric lenses are useful for correcting astigmatism. Since the lens needs to align with the shape of the cornea it is correcting, toric lenses must not rotate in order to fit on the eye. They are typically available in the office however they can be custom made to correct a specific type of astigmatism. For that reason, this type of lens takes longer to make and costs more than a traditional contact lens.
Bifocal, multifocal and monovision lenses can help remedy difficulty seeing up close. Several options are available in the office with most patients leaving with the exact lenses they need the same day. Typically these lenses require small revisions to get exactly right but your eye care professional at West Texas Eyecare will work hard to find exactly what you need.
Medicated eye drops can be an effective solution for dealing with dry eyes. They will lubricate eyes enough to make contact lenses more bearable, although a punctual occlusion also must be done to plug the ducts in some extreme cases. GPC symptoms can also be lessened through medicated eye drops. They flush out protein deposits and reduce inflammation.