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Contact Lenses for Dry Eyes

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Dry Eye Treatment in Long Grove, IL

Contact lenses are typically a very comfortable way to see with crisp vision. In fact, most people forget that they are wearing them. However, if you suffer from dry eye – contact lenses can lead to a slew of uncomfortable or painful symptoms. Approximate five million Americans suffer from dry eye, so if you have this condition, you are far from alone. Fortunately, a range of contact lenses for dry eye are now available. Our Long Grove, IL eye doctor will perform a thorough eye exam to assess your condition and recommend the best dry eye treatment and type of contacts to keep your eyes healthy and comfortable.

What is dry eye?

Dry eye syndrome occurs when you do not have enough tears or your tear composition is poor. Either way, there is an inadequate amount of lubricating moisture on your eyes. This is what can make wearing contact lenses into a painful experience. Classic symptoms include a sandy or gritty sensation in your eyes, redness, stinging or burning, and itchiness.

Why does dry eye happen?

There are several causes for dry eye, ranging from normal aging to specific medical conditions to side effects from certain drugs. Contrary to popular belief, contact lenses do not usually cause dry eye – but they can certainly make it worse. Contacts coat the surface of your eye, which decreases the amount of oxygen that reaches your eye and also inhibits your eye’s ability to heal. In addition, people with dry eye already have sensitive corneas, and contacts raise the risk of corneal irritation even higher.

Our detailed eye exam will identify the cause of your dry eye in order to prescribe the most effective, personalized dry eye treatment. If you want to wear contact lenses, the results of your eye exam will also help us to figure out the best contact lenses for dry eye to recommend.

Specialized Contact Lenses for Dry Eye

Soft contacts are made from a breathable, flexible material called hydrogel, which has high oxygen permeability. They come in a few versions, such as disposable dailies, regular daily wear, and extended wear lenses. Dailies can provide a comfortable and healthy type of contact lenses for dry eye. Basically, they are discarded before any irritating protein deposits can accumulate on the lens surface. When it comes to daily, weekly, and monthly contacts, each respective type features a unique composition that promotes high moisture retention. We carry a complete inventory of premium, brand-name contacts in our Long Grove, IL, optical office, and our eye doctor will recommend the most appropriate type of contact lenses for your dry eye.

Another option is scleral lenses, which are rigid gas permeable lenses that have a different shape than standard contact lenses. They feature an extra-wide diameter, which vaults over your eye and rests on the sclera (white part of your eye). Because of the way sclerals bridge the eye’s surface, they leave a gap between the lens and your eye. This space becomes a wet reservoir for moisture, which can resolve eye irritation for people with dry eye syndrome.

Visit Your Long Grove, IL, Eye Doctor for the Best Contact Lenses for Dry Eye

A diagnosis of dry eye syndrome doesn’t mean you need to give up on wearing contact lenses! There are a number of contact lens options that can give you clear and comfortable sight. If you suffer from dry eye irritation, contact us to schedule a contact lens eye exam and fitting. We will recommend dry eye treatment and discuss the various brands and types of contact lenses on the market in order to find the most helpful type.