Contacts are becoming increasingly popular among individuals who need to correct their vision. The appeal of not wearing glasses have led this trend, and many people think they’ll never go back to wearing glasses after trying on their first pair of contact lenses. However, as time goes on, they might be noticing some negative effects of wearing contacts that may lead them to seek out other options.
When wearing contact lenses, the quantity of tears that your eye is absorbing is greatly reduced. Instead, those tears are being absorbed the by the contacts! The lack of moisture leads to unpleasant dry eye symptoms, like itchiness, redness and a burning sensation in your eyes. If your eyes become way too dry, your cornea can even become scarred – which is very painful.
The combination of using contact lenses and some medications, especially birth control pills, can result in chronic dry eye and irritation. When taking birth control, for example, and wearing contact lenses, the tear film in your eye can become damaged. The tear film consists of three main layers that work together to protect, bathe and nourish your eye. The combination of birth control and contacts can upset the balance among the three layers, causing you to feel a gritty sensation in your eye and a burning feeling due to excessive tearing.
Decreased Corneal Reflex
Contact lenses use may cause diminished corneal reflex in your eye. The corneal reflex is responsible for making sure that we close our eyes if something is threatening them, like an object flying towards your eye or someone trying to poke you. It is a protective mechanism signaled by the brain to your eyelids, telling them to close whenever any pressure is applied to the cornea.
Constant use of contacts can cause your body to ignore the corneal reflex, or may dull the body’s response to it. This can lead to all different types of eye damage because your eyes did not close fast enough.
Your contacts have the possibility of scratching your cornea if not fitted properly or when your eye becomes too dry, causing a corneal abrasion. You also increase your chance of a corneal abrasion when sleeping in your contacts or if you are carelessly inserting or removing them. Besides just the pain and uncomfortableness of a corneal abrasion, you might also get an infection because the abrasion creates an opening for bacteria and viruses.
Pink Eye or Conjunctivitis
Wearing contact lenses greatly increases your risk of developing conjunctivitis or a sty, especially if you sleep in them. Contacts provide a moist environment that acts as breeding ground for bacteria and viruses. And since less oxygen reaches your cornea when wearing the contacts, your body cannot fight off the infection as effectively as it could.
A condition where your eyelids start to droop, ptosis can lead to the affected person not being able to open their eyes fully. The contact lenses can move into the eyelid tissue, causing scarring and contraction.
What You Can Do
First, you can start wearing your contact lenses less, and use your glasses more regularly – at the very least make sure to always clean your lenses and do not sleep in them. However, if you are one of the many people that switched to contact lenses to stop wearing your glasses, there is another option for you: Lasik surgery. This surgery is done to correct your vision, and frees you from having to wear your glasses or contacts. For this reason, it is a good idea to talk to your eye doctor about the undergoing the procedure.
LASIK in Orange County
If you are having concerns about wearing your contact lenses, make sure to contact Dr. Ghosheh and the team of dedicated eye care experts at Advanced Eye Medical. We offer a number of services for patients who are suffering poor vision or eye diseases/conditions, including LASIK in Orange County. Our experienced team of optometrists and ophthalmologists deliver clearer vision and a high level of customized care for our patients.