I only wear contact lenses when I am participating in an event where glasses may be lost or broken or just simply be in the way. Many years ago I wore them everywhere and all the time, I love contact lenses. The reason I went to limited wear is due to my allergies. We moved to a city that never had a winter and something bloomed all year around.
Last year, I was told by my eye doctor that I have dry eye and she recommended I use liquid tears. So that may have played a factor in my issue with the contacts, except I had lubricated my eyes before I put them in.
The Alcon Dailies Aqua Comfort Plus contact lenses are very thin. The thinnest I have ever worn. That's where the problem (for me) lays. They are very hard for me to see for the first thing and very hard to get a hold on for the second thing. If you drop them you may never find them.
I wore them, then when the time came to take them out, it took me forty-five minutes to get the right one out and after four hours of trying to remove the left one, I gave up. I looked to see if it was okay to sleep for a short period with them in, and the website for these lenses said - NO!
It could cause damage and increased risk of infections. I had two choices either to stay awake until morning and go to my doctor, or I had to go to the ER to get them to remove it. I chose the ER.
It's hard to explain how hard it is for me to remove these particular lenses. They are extremely thin, which is good for comfort, but bad for someone like me when you are trying to remove them.
After this episode, I returned them to the eye doctor so that I wouldn't accidentally put them in again in the future. The only ones in my drawer now are the ones that are thicker and easier to remove.
My warning to anyone using these thin lenses it to be aware that if your eyes tend to be dry, you may have a difficult or as in my case, an impossible time removing them. Also, never consider sleeping in them. You may be able to sleep in them once and have no problem, but the Alcon company was very clear NOT to sleep in them. The ER doctor and my eye doctor both told me that I was wise not to have slept in them as damage to the eye can result.
BIG WARNING! Always following the manufacturer's instructions for wearing, caring, removing, and sleeping in contact lenses. NEVER make assumptions about them. NEVER take chances.
Years ago I learned this lesson the hard way. I wore extended wear contacts that could be worn up to seven days. You could sleep in them, but it was recommended to do so only on rare occasions and not on a regular basis.
I wore these extended wear contacts for seven day and slept in them for six.
Why, you may ask? Because I went on a camping trip and forgot my contact storage case and my glasses. I did remember solution, but nothing to store them in. In error, I thought it wouldn't hurt just once to sleep in them a few nights.
Nothing during the camping trip led me to believe any damage had been done. However, when I took them off to throw them out once I got home, it was a different story.
The next day I went to put a fresh pair of lenses in and my eye lids were red and inflamed and felt like sand paper. I made an appointment for my eye doctor, but by the time I got there, my eyes were also tearing up and sunlight hurt them.
I had a severe case of conjuctivitis and blepharitis.
Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelid that affects the eyelashes and/or tear production. This is an infection that can last for a year or more.
It did take a long time to heal with the help of steroidal eye drops and an ointment. I also had to take an antibiotic.
Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the outer membrane of the eyeball and the inner eyelid. It is sometimes called "pink eye" It is long process to get over, but it takes ibuprofen, lubricating eye drops, and warm damp washcloths over the eyes for minutes at a time.
I can tell you, I NEVER DID THAT AGAIN, EVER!
Hope this blog article benefits someone who wears contacts or is considering them. I love them, and I will continue to wear them, but I will always give proper respect for the instructions that come along with them. I will also never wear ultra thin contacts again.
Have you ever had an unpleasant experience with contacts? Have you ever had an infection caused by wearing contacts? Do you have any advice or tips for those of us who wear them? Share your stories and maybe you can save someone's eyes.