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  • Contact lens intolerance

    I wore contacts 11 years. I would only get problems like itching, red, ect. Then when i was 21 my DR gave me a new size lens which sorta helped. I still had problems getting dry and kept seeing those commercials on tv for accuve. So, in april 2008 I got a new script and this time I got accuvue. I had problems with getting the right lens because my strength is very high and I cant choose just any type or brand. The oasis worked great. I liked them alot, no more itching. Even after having them in all day and night, my eyes looked white. I would actually admire how white they looked in the mirror. I was so used to them being bloodshot(I smoke). Then in june i got a small infection. Just red and stinging. I would normally just wait it out, one day and I would wake up the next day with crust and the red was gone. THis was my last of many warnings. Because july 18 2008 I got the worse infection. After this day, my life would never be the same. I didnt even have a back up pair of glasses. My eyes got sooooo freaking red. I was basically blind (-9/-10.5). Had to order glasses, waited two weeks with out being able to see. Like an idiot, I did wear lens with infection to do things like visit DR or get food. This did damage that I see have today. DR put me on Zylet. The glasses come in and HOLY SH*T. They are thick! Im the biggest moron on earth. I wore lens to the point where i have intolerance and now Im STUCK with goggles. Do you have any idea? My glasses lens are almost 1/2 inch thick, weight 1OZ. I cant wear them anywhere. I tried to go out with friend who is never rude and he kept staring. Also people just comment, "They're so thick"
    I went from contacts everyday all day, to not being able to wear them a second with out feeling the itch. Now, looking back all the warnings I had. DR at wallmart wouldnt write me script for contacts. I just curse him(literally) ask for refund and had other Dr write script. All those years I never rest my eyes once! I wear lens all day, all night....some times 24 hours or over night. They used to get so dry and blood shot. The whole time using clear eyes drops. My boss at every job would comment, "why are your eyes red?"
    maybe because i was out drinking/smoking all last night, take out lens 4-5 hours then back in. My eyes have red that wont go away. Red veins that over lap each other. The best thing for me would be preventing infection. Too late for me. Now just stuck with HUGE glasses, wake up they are dry, always red, expensive drops.
    -tear drops
    The lotemax makes eyes dry, stings, expensive.
    restasis helps, only been 2 months. They made eyes white, looked like I would be cured. Then just like other drops, they benefits wear off. back to red. This is my nightmare, my life has changed. Worse year of my life! Keep in mind why I didnt rest eyes?
    Because I hate glasses! And i LOVED contacts. I thought accuve would be my cure of dry eye but, its changed my life and I wanna go back to contacts. Anyone opinions would be great to hear.

  • #2
    Hi & welcome

    Sorry to hear your story.

    I guess I don't need to beat you up about how you have abused your eyes, because you're doing a really good job of that yourself

    I hope you quit Clear Eyes for good - I am sure the preservative contributed to your present predicament....

    My first thought is, why are the glasses so horrible? With your prescription I am SURE you can get better looking glasses. Before I had LASIK (my fatal mistake ), I had a higher prescription than yours, and astigmatism, and although I did not like wearing glasses (I wore contacts for 20 years) I was able to get some nice looking ones made in a small stylish frame. Yes, they were thicker than I'd like! but they weren't goggles. So I'd be talking to an optician about something better, to make glasses wearing tolerable for however long you have to do it.
    Rebecca Petris
    The Dry Eye Zone


    • #3
      Hey there. I totally understand where youíre coming from. I was a -14 prior to having refractive surgery (my biggest mistake). My glasses were so heavy I swear I couldíve killed someone by clocking them over the head with them.

      Iím a little unclear from your message as to how much rest you are currently giving your eyes between lens wearing sessions. Since your last big infection last month have you truly given your eyes a total rest from contacts for at least 2 Ė 3 weeks without ANY wear to fully re-cooperate? Iím asking because I see you mentioned that you were still wearing them to go out here and there even during the infection. My first piece of advice would be to tackle that infection and get your eyes back to a healthy state before even attempting ďa short wearĒ. Work with an eye doctor and stay completely out of your lenses (no exceptions) until your eyes have cleared up. Once they feel like they cleared up, still wait 2 or 3 more days before trying contacts again.

      Once your eyes have cleared up, donít try to go back to full-time wear of your contact lenses. Try NOT to think in terms of ďabsolutesĒ (i.e., if I canít wear my lenses all day, every day, then I canít wear contacts). Your eyes are trying to tell you something. Perhaps they can no longer tear well enough to support all day, every day contact lens wear. Our eyes begin to tear less naturally as we age. Change / optimize your wearing schedule. Do you by any chance spend long hours working in front of a computer? If so, wear your glasses for those periods and save your contacts for going out with friends, exercise, weekends etcÖ Staring at a computer monitor or anything up close for long periods is tough on the eyes in and of itself. Also, when youíre wearing your lenses, keep a bottle of Refresh Contacts or similar rewetting solution on you so any time you start to feel dry you can re-wet before the lens begins to rub your cornea. Also, donít sleep in your lenses any more. Your eyes definitely produce even fewer tears at night while you sleep Ė so why irritate your corneas for an additional 6 Ė 8 hours when your eyes are closed anyway! Not wearing them during sleep may allow you to get an extra couple of hours of wear during the day. I practice what I preach by the way. Even having severe dry eyes I am still able to get some contact lens wear in here and there when I really want it without getting infections.

      One final piece of advice for you. I do truly understand your disgust for glasses. BELIEVE ME, I do. Although you didnít mention having any desire to have refractive surgery, I want to say anyway that I strongly advise STAYING AWAY from it. At your prescription level there are still surgeons out there that might tell you that you are within limits. But you definitely would be at high risk for ghosting, starbursts and halos at that level. Iíve got them big time and TRUST ME, you donít want them. Also, cutting the cornea severs nerves that control tearing response. Refractive procedures lower tear production and if you already have some degree of dry eye (which it sounds like you do) you may end up a lot worse off then you already are. If you think you have problems with contacts now, your problems will be A LOT worse after post refractive surgery regression occurs (which is almost certain at your prescription level).

      Iím in New York as well (Long Island). I know of a couple of true contact lens experts both on Long Island and in Manhatten that might also be able to help you do a little better then youíre doing now (with errÖummm the Walmart guy). If you are interested in some names send me a PM and Iíll send you their contact info.



      • #4
        Great advice Mike...couldn't have said it any better.


        • #5
          Originally posted by ALK-O'd View Post
          Hey there. I totally understand where youíre coming from. I was a -14 prior to having refractive surgery (my biggest mistake). My glasses were so heavy I swear I couldíve killed someone by clocking them over the head with them.

          Iím a little unclear from your message as to how much rest you are currently giving your eyes between lens wearing sessions. Since your last big infection last month have you truly given your eyes a total rest from contacts for at least 2 Ė 3 weeks without ANY wear to fully re-cooperate?
          The infection was july of LAST year. I did wear the contacts for short times during the infection....yea, it was stupid. Then again, I was stupid for getting the infection in the 1st place. To give better idea with out worthless details.
          -I'm 24
          wore contacts from age 11-23 EVERYDAY
          I was using clear eyes to get rid of red(but would dry out contacts)
          I wore them for long periods of time(over night)
          I had only used oasiss for a few months before infection. They got rid of the dry feeling. Too bad, I had bad hygiene(would take them out or put them back in with out washing hands.) To me, contacts were always a pain so I never took that extra care to prevent infection. I just used to deal with eyes being strained and looking red. Some times I would put in lens and it would feel like lemons being squeezed into my eyes. This went on for years and I never took it as clue to rest eyes with glasses. A -10.5 glasses is too thick. I CANT do anything with these on. I wear new daily contacts for 20 mins per day(just to get food). The past year I have used clear eyes just so people wouldnt think I look bad in school. Now I read the clear eyes is bad idea. The past year the longest I had lens in was about 8 hours. I was using tears that day and had to get them out soon as i got home. WHen i put in contact its uncomfortable and itch when i blink. Before infection I would wear lens all day and it was like they werent even there. Only times when I had to wake up early would they sting and get red. I use restasis but doubt that will cure me. I might look into other things at DR because I do have problems with cotton mouth or cold hands and feet. These might be related, and Im hoping there could be another cure. Thanks for reading, I know it's long. I have had a bad year. Everything was going wrong until this and I realized that I wasnt taking care of my self. Now stuck with consequences.


          • #6
            I might look into other things at DR because I do have problems with cotton mouth or cold hands and feet.
            Hi again Vinny. Iím not a doctor, but the dry mouth along with the dry eyes is a possible warning sign of Sjogrenís Syndrome, an autoimmune disorder. You may want to research this a bit online and see if you have other symptoms. I would definitely mention your symptoms to your doctor. They can do a simple blood test and / or lip biopsy to see if you have it.

            I CANT do anything with these on.
            Címon. Yes you can. Again, I was -14. I know glasses are a bummer but you have to get past the self-consciousness part of it. No, youíre not going to play tackle football with them on but most other things you should be able to manage. For the few things that you need contacts for, youíll wear contacts for. More on that later.

            The things that annoy me most about glasses are:

            1. The sliding down the nose nonsense.
            Remedy : Wash your face or use some of those skin oil remover wipes on both your nose AND the nose grip pads when the slipping starts. Also, change the nose grip pads on the frame every 6 mo. If itís still a problem, go to the place you bought the frame and ask to have them adjusted. They should do it for free. Yeah, you can probably do it yourself with a pair of pliers, but if you break them your hosed.

            2. Lenses get dirty.
            Remedy : Keep a lens cleaning cloth handy. Itís easier to pull that out of your pocket and do a quick wipe down then to have to run to a sink every time a smudge gets on them.

            3. The behind the ear pinch.
            Remedy : Again, you can have them adjusted. Thereís also these things that both act as padding behind the ear and help stop the slippage problem as well:

            4. Lack of peripheral vision.
            Remedy : I donít have a cheap solution for this one but Iíll say this: If you honestly and truly have to wear glasses all or most of the time then they should be a pair that is both comfortable and provides the best overall vision. If you find that your frames get in your field of vision and it drives you nuts then go buy a new pair that holds bigger lenses. Itíll be worth the $400 if you feel better wearing them.

            I wear new daily contacts for 20 mins per day(just to get food).
            20 minutes only?? Thatís a little troubling. Either your dry eye is very severe or your contact lens fitter SUCKS. Seriously, find a good O.D. in your area that has some expertise on dry eye management and try to find the root cause of your dry eye. I have MGD and manage it by taking 3000 mg of Omega 3s daily, do hot compresses w/ lid massage, take Restasis, limit (not eliminate) contact lens wear, and use Genteal Gel + TranquilEyes goggles with moist pads at night. You need to know what the cause of your dryness is before you can properly treat it.

            Also, more positively, there are A LOT of contact lens options out there these days and a whole lot more coming down the pike. A new lens material and / or a new fit may make a world of difference. We only see advertisements for the Accuvues on TV, but there are hundreds if not thousands of various types of soft lenses out there. Some other good ones off the top of my head for dry eyes are ProClear, Biofinity and AirOptix. I never did well with Accuvue Oasys but do OK with a ProClear compatible. Also, I have a relatively new set of semi-sclerals (Blanchardís MSD Scleral)that I use for my night vision problems (thanks to refractive surgery) which subsequently are awesome for dry eye because they completely vault the cornea and trap fluid against it. Do some research on Scleral Contact lenses.They are RGPs (Rigid Gas Permeable) but they are much more comfortable than you'd expect. They can work wonders for even the most severe dry eye sufferers. I actually plan on writing a review on mine soon over on the sister web site to this one (Díeyealogues : Can you tell I like to write?

            Hang in there. There are tons of solutions out there. You just need to find yours.


            • #7
              I know how you feel! I definitely over wore my contacts and kept on getting eye infections, or so I thought. Turns out my eyes were severely irritated from contact use and thats when I found out I had dry eye. I had to wear my glasses for a few months with no contacts at all, so my eyes could clear up.

              After Restasis, Systane Drops and Punctal Plugs I am back in contacts for limited use. I was switched to Oasys contacts and can only wear them for a maximum of 8 hours. I try to wear my glasses as much as I can though.

              If you don't feel like you're getting enough help I would look into another Ophthalmologist. If your eyes don't feel better though or are still irritated I would stay away from contacts! I know how hard it is to wear glasses, I hate how they make me look. But I bought 2 pairs when I found out I couldn't wear my contacts, 1 more fashionable and 1 everyday. I am more used to them now and don't mind it as much as I did in the beginning.

              Just don't give up things can get better! It may just take some time and lots and lots of patience.


              • #8
                Hello there.

                I have the exact same prescription as yours, and I wore contacts for 10 years, since I was 13. I got DE symptoms (not contacts related) when I was 23, and now I'm 25. So I definitely understand where you're coming from. At first, I couldn't STAND the thought of wearing glasses...esp. my thick glasses. Even tho we have the same prescription, and my glasses are still pretty thick, they don't sound anywhere as thick as yours. Did you get the thinnest lens possible? There is a HUGE difference from the thinnest lens vs. regular lens. Also, the style of glasses you get can hide the thickness of your lens. For example, its currently very fashionable to wear the chunky plastic frames. These frames do a much better job at hiding the thickness of the lens than the thin metal frames. For example, a frame like this (these are men's...i'm not sure if you're M or F):


                has a much thicker side, so no one can see how thick your glasses are.

                Also, have you thought of getting pair of prescription sunglasses? You can wear those in the daytime instead of glasses, and you'll look fine, just like when you're wearing contacts. That's what I do.

                And finally, please give your eyes a break. You've abused them enough. Stay out of them completely and let your eyes heal. Since you're young, and with the ever improving technology, there is a good chance that you will be in contacts again someday. Don't decrease your future chances by continuing to wear contacts and risk permanent damage. Also, there are great optometrists out there very skilled in fitting patients with difficult cases. Seek out those optometrists, not the Walmart run-of-the-mill optometrists.


                • #9
                  I agree with odydnas on chosing them correctly. I have a much higher prescription and my lenses are really really thick - way thicker than the figure you quote for yours....and I hate it but there's nothing to do but get on with it. someone somewhere has thicker than me and probably is suffering more...

                  I have plastic frames, with the thick sides, which helps disguise them a little, I have ones that don't have a frame rim around the bottom - because whatever really - people will see the thickness from the side you have to rise above it - - easier said that done, I know very well.

                  I have had the comments, the 'you know you can get thin lenses these days' comments when you HAVE flipping thin lenses

                  The last pair I had my optician very carefully helped me with frames, took us months in fact of me going to the shop until I was happy with them, she sent them to the lab each time we had a pair I liked to get a rough measurement of the thickness before we chose the final pair. Don't believe everything they try to tell you about 'smaller the better' apparently it's the bridge measurement too - I had two pairs I finally liked the SMALLER frames would have had LARGER lenses! My frames are rectangular, avoid round ones they look awful with the thickness and my peripheral isn't fantastic at the sides but up and down I see fine.

                  Find a really good optician, that's my advice. And spend time on the rest of your styling. If you are well dressed, hair done well, (make up girls if you can stand it) - then you will still look good. You have to believe in yourself to rise above it.
                  just keep swimming...


                  • #10
                    I just went 6 days, no contacts. Used lotemax once a day, doesnt burn like it used to. Also main improvement, because of restasis. I've been on nearly three months, its starting to work! I had to put in contacts and go somewhere.....
                    no itch! Its hot so yea they kinda were red from sweat going into my eye. I only had them in like 1 hour before I started to feel a strain. Only because of heat. So yea three months and I have more tears. I dont wake up with them all dried shut anymore. Also I use gel lube. Its a gel that turns to oxygen on eyes, for severe dry eye. Works better then tears. Also I got a free bottle of optive tears in the mail from my restasis script. In another 3 months I think I will have even more tears and maybe I can wear contacts more. The red veins, they are still there. Very gross to just see red red red veins. Embarrassing to be in public. Frustrating to look in mirror to see all those gross veins.


                    • #11
                      Yea guess no one really cares about my problem....
                      looks like news isnt so good after all. I wore the lens maybe 2 hours total. They didnt itch bad but, they get red as hell!!! The 9 o clock is where the right eye got red bad! It looks like a perfectly straight line of red on my eye ball! Along with all the other red that was already there. LOOKS LIKE TOTAL FREAKING RED. I've been waiting over a year now and still cant wear lens. a god dam piece of plastic on my eye ball! ANd my glasses are 1/2 inch thick. This really drives me insane! I really dont care anymore. My life is over, cant even leave the house to SEE FRIENDS. I cant work, cant see good with these goggles. Im going to find Dr to do lazer correction. I will be 25 next april so, I doubt my eyes will change more. 25 is not early 20s so its time for lazer correction. I HATE GLASSES!!!!! I will find dr to do it , I dont care of risk. Anything is better then having 1/2 inch thick glasses.


                      • #12
                        I am really, really sorry you're having such a bad time.

                        Originally posted by NeedHealing631 View Post
                        Yea guess no one really cares about my problem....
                        I care, and so do others. Try not to judge by whether you get an immediate reply to your post.

                        Im going to find Dr to do lazer correction. I will be 25 next april so, I doubt my eyes will change more. 25 is not early 20s so its time for lazer correction. I HATE GLASSES!!!!! I will find dr to do it , I dont care of risk. Anything is better then having 1/2 inch thick glasses.
                        Even if you don't care about the risk, the doctor will. Based on what you have described here of your history and current condition, I don't think even an under-par surgeon would want to perform an elective laser refractive procedure on you. And for that I'm grateful. I hate seeing people leap from the frying pan to the fire.
                        Rebecca Petris
                        The Dry Eye Zone


                        • #13
                          It really wouldnt be that bad, if i could get 5-6 hours out of wearing them. I only had them in 2 hour max and have red. All those times I wore them non stop, 24 hours. It was contacts everyday for 11 years. I never realized one day I couldnt even get them was like my daily routine to put them in as I woke up. This is really screwed up my life. I never leave the house, cant work.
                          really driving me insane. I dont want glasses period and good luck finding anything decent with my script. -9/-10.5


                          • #14
                            I did reply to you earlier but I'm not sure you read it but I did a long post about looking for the right glasses, you're giving up very fast
                            just keep swimming...


                            • #15
                              I agree with Stanza---a really good optician can make a big difference. I'm only a -8.25 but I understand how difficult it is to feel comfortable with glasses. I wore contact lenses for many years, too---even after the lenses were causing severe inflammation.

                              After a month out of lenses, I was so much more comfortable that I wasn't nearly as tempted to try them again.

                              One thing that helped me accept glasses was a picture someone took of me while on a hike---wearing my contacts. My eyes looked so incredibly strained, squinty, with dark circles, etc. I hadn't realized how bad they looked. I still have the dark circles and redness somewhat, but that is hidden by the glasses and I look much better "in pictures" now.



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