Could that itchy, intrinsic irritation in your eye be an early sign of corneal damage? Here’s how contact lens rewetting solutions might be able to protect your cornea.


Do you often complain about blurred vision, eye pain or a stinging, burning sensation in the eye?  

Light sensitivity, redness of the eye, swollen eyelids, watery eyes or increased tearing are other symptoms of corneal damage in the early stages. Aside from eye allergies and other diseases like Keratoconus, one of the common causes of corneal damage is the improper usage of contact lenses.  Studies related to relation between corneal damage and use of contact lens have shown results supporting adverse effects of contact lens which can be harmful to the eyes on long term use. 1

Contact lens and corneal damage: 

Contact lenses are generally safe and easy to use, as long as you take good care of them. Common ways wearers abuse heir contact lenses include:  

  • Long duration wear- This prevents your cornea from getting the required supply of oxygen. There are new varieties of lenses that promise better oxygen permeation, but there's nothing like oxygen reaching your eyes directly.  

  • Not replacing contact lenses on time - How many of us have pushed the usage of monthly disposables beyond 40 days? The next time you plan to push the usage of your contact lenses by another day or two,think again about your cornea!  

  • Sleeping in contact lenses–We know we shouldn’t do it, but we all have had late nights and slept in our contacts accidentally. However, the reduced oxygen levels due to contact lens in closed eyes may cause severe harm. So the next time you are thinking about napping or sleeping with your lenses on, spend the extra minute to take them off!   

This doesn't mean that you need to stop using your contact lenses and switch to spectacles instead. Corneal damage can be controlled if necessary steps are taken to nourish the eye. Avoiding the habits listed above will make a huge difference to the comfort level of your eyes. Contact lens rewetters can also be of great help in lubricating your eyes.  

 


Contact lens rewetters to avoid corneal damage:  

Products like Blink Contacts® Lubricating Eye Drops, COMPLETE® Blink-N-Clean® Lens Drops and COMPLETE® Lubricating and Rewetting Drops are variants of rewetting solutions that help lubricate contact lenses and provide lens wearing comfort while extending their wear time. The solution also : 

  • Removes particles that cause irritation to the eye 

  • Helps prevent deposit build-up 

  • Provides a refreshing burst of moisture that helps diffuse more oxygen 

A lot of studies have been conducted to study the efficiency of rewetters on people who use contact lens which have shown to give relief from the irritation caused due to long term use of contact lens2. However, do remember that contact lens rewetting solutions are not replacements for artificial tears that help relieve dry eyes. They are not medications either that help mitigate symptoms of corneal damage. If used appropriately, they can help provide comfort for irritated eyes and avoid, or at best, control the onset of corneal damage.



References: 
1 Guillon, J.P., Guillon, M. and Malgouyres, S. 1990 “Corneal desiccation staining with hydrogel lenses: tear film and contact lens factors”. Ophthal. Physiol. Opt., 10:343.
2 Robert Monte ́s-Mico ́, Alejandro Cervin ̃ o, Teresa Ferrer-Blasco, Santiago Garcı ́a-La ́zaro, Susana Ortı ́-Navarro. 2010,Optical quality after instillation of eyedrops in dry-eye syndrome,36:935–940.

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