How to Treat Contact Lens Intolerance. Expert Advice

Are you struggling with your contact lenses? You’re not alone. The CDC reports that an estimated 45 million people in the United States wear contact lenses.  Approximately five million face one or more issues with Contact Lens Intolerance (CLI). The symptoms of CLI can range from slightly irritating to completely debilitating. Understanding how to relieve the symptoms and treat this condition is essential to enjoy proper vision without discomfort. 

What Is Contact Lens Intolerance?

Contact lens intolerance

The longer you wear contacts, the more you might experience issues. While CLI describes a generalized irritation, discomfort, or pain when wearing contacts, you may also immediately react when you put in the lens. 

Even if you were once comfortable wearing contacts, you might develop a greater sensitivity over months or years. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, sometimes people have an occasional contact lens intolerance, whereas others find the encounter so severe they can no longer wear contacts. 

You may experience CLI if you have allergies, dry eyes, or a poor fit. Improper care, lens materials, and a reaction to the solution may also cause CLI. Luckily, contact lens intolerance isn’t a permanent problem, and there are many ways to relieve CLI. 

How to Relieve CLI

Check Your Cleaning Solution

Pay attention to how you clean and store your contacts. The products you use contain preservatives, which can lead to hypersensitivity. If you just changed your cleaning and storage solution, that might be the cause of your recent CLI. 

Change Your Contact Brand

Your lens material may be the culprit of your eye irritation. You may have to research different contact brands to see which one is the best for you. This treatment for CLI may be a costly experiment, though. 

Evaluate Wear and Care 

If you wear your contact lenses for too long, they can irritate your eyes, leading to CLI. Make sure you take them out each night and clean them properly, especially before inserting them back in your eye. Follow the doctor’s instructions on how to wear and care for your contacts to avoid discomfort or pain. 

Lubricate Your Eyes

It’s common to have dry eyes. However, this seemingly minor condition can lead to extreme irritation. Try using lubricant eye drops or over-the-counter artificial tears. This solution is only temporary but can help relieve CLI symptoms.  

Focus on Diet and Nutrition

Your eating and drinking habits can impact your tear production and the quality of your tears. In addition to using eye drops for lubrication, you can focus on a healthier diet to help improve your eyes. Your doctor can help you create a nutritional plan that benefits your eye health. 

Start Wearing Glasses

It could be time to go back to wearing eyeglasses if you are dealing with frequent CLI. Switching your contacts for glasses for at least a few days per week can help because you’re giving your eyes a rest from those uncomfortable symptoms. In some cases, wearing glasses might not be a good option. Keep reading for one last treatment for contact lens intolerance that will be a once-and-for-all solution. 

Get Vision Correction Surgery

The best way to stop CLI is to eliminate the need for contacts altogether. You won’t need eyeglasses, either, after having vision correction surgery. Options include LASIK, SMILE LASIK, PRK, all of which reshape the cornea to correct astigmatism, nearsightedness, or farsightedness.

You’ll be able to enjoy clear and comfortable vision after your procedure. Discuss these various laser options with your doctor, and you can determine which is best for your situation. With decades of gold-standard satisfaction, you can rest assured knowing vision correction surgery will not only treat contact lens intolerance but your need for contact lenses and glasses. 

Contact SuraVision

Are you tired of having contact lens intolerance symptoms? We can help you. 

You don’t have to deal with the frustrations of CLI. SuraVision is your modern vision correction solution center. Surgery can be a permanent solution to being able to forego contact lenses altogether and is something you should consider if you have these symptoms. 

Dr. Sura is a fellowship-trained, board-certified eye surgeon with expertise in every modern vision correction technology, including LASIK, PRK, SMILE, ICL, and RLE.