A woman with contact lens discomfort.

If you were to ask a group of contact lens wearers why they prefer contacts over glasses, you’d likely get an array of responses related to looks, lifestyle and personal freedom. Indeed, many people are fiercely attached to these benefits—so much so that they are willing to overlook some of the less pleasant aspects related to contact lens wear. One of the most common issues some patients experience with contact lenses is discomfort.

A Common Mistake

In a perfect world, wearing a contact lens should feel like throwing on your favorite pair slippers — it should never feel like walking for 12 hours in heels. Yet many contact lens wearers endure discomfort every day. Some even hide it from their eye doctors for fear they’ll be told to wear their lenses less often.

Don’t make this mistake. Instead, be forthcoming with your doctor about what you’d like to change about your contact lenses. You will likely be pleasantly surprised by the alternatives.

Ask for Something Else

If you don’t tell your doctor that your lenses aren’t as comfortable as you’d like, he or she will probably assume everything is fine, so speak up for yourself. There are alternative lenses that your doctor may not have presented to you because you downplayed your discomfort. If your eyes feel tired or dry at the end of the day, say something. Let your doctor know that you’re interested in wearing a different lens for a few days’ trial period.

Your doctor will need to consider lots of factors when choosing the best lens for you, but the two key considerations are lens material and replacement schedule. Both of these can impact how comfortable your lenses feel.

You Have Two Decisions

If you are used to taking your lenses out every day, cleaning them, storing them overnight, and then reusing the same lenses the next day, you’ll probably be prescribed a silicone hydrogel lens material. Most, if not all, types of patients who are wearing reusable lenses are good candidates for silicone hydrogel 1 day lenses.

ECPs fit 88% of their monthly and weekly contact lens wearers in silicone hydrogel lenses.i Due to its increased oxygen transmissibility, silicone hydrogel offers patients a healthier* lens-wearing experience.

Once you and your doctor have settled on a lens material, you’ll need to decide how frequently you want to discard and replace your contact lenses. Typically, you can do this every day, every two weeks, or every month. If you sometimes cut corners and avoid cleaning your contact lenses each time you remove them as required in the instructions for proper use, a 1 day disposable lens that doesn’t need cleaning and disinfecting would be better suited to your lifestyle. Daily disposable lenses are also a great choice if you have allergies since allergens can attach to lenses over time, making them less comfortable. By putting on a new pair of lenses every day, you can rest assured that your lenses are fresh.

Combine the Benefits of Both

If you are already in a 1 day lens, or if you already wear silicone hydrogel reusable lenses, don’t despair! The possibilities don’t end here. Today, many doctors are turning to the combined benefits of a silicone hydrogel material in a daily disposable 1 day platform—meaning you can enjoy the benefits of both, which could have a big impact on comfort.

The truth is, a lot of 1 day hydrogel wearers have end-of-day dryness and redness that interferes with daily life. For these patients, combining silicone hydrogel with a 1 day lens can be just what the doctor ordered. Consider: about 80% of ECPs agree that silicone hydrogel 1 day lenses are more comfortable than hydrogel 1 day lenses. Most ECPs (88%) also say these lenses dehydrate less and provide better long term wearing comfort than hydrogel 1 day lenses.ii

Whether you are experiencing problems now or just want to proactively avoid them by ensuring your eyes get lots of oxygen and a clean, fresh lens ever day, talk to your doctor about why 1 day silicone hydrogel may be a good fit for you.

Options for 1 Day Wearers

CooperVision's broad range of silicone hydrogel 1 day contact lenses can provide up to four times more oxygen transmissibility than traditional hydrogel contact lenses.iii From the clariti® 1 day family to MyDay®, virtually all patients can be fit into a 1 day contact lens that provides high oxygen, comfort, and convenience.

For more information, visit PrescribeOxygen.com

*With higher oxygen permeability than hydrogel materials, silicone hydrogel contact lenses minimize or eliminate hypoxia-related signs and symptoms during lens wear.

Nothing in this blog post is to be construed as medical advice, nor is it intended to replace the recommendation of a medical professional. For specific questions, please see your Eye Care Practitioner. 

i. Industry third-party data.

ii. ECP perception of the benefits of 1-day silicone hydrogels. February 2018. Cello Health Insight. Data on file. Survey carried out online in US, UK, and Japan. Total sample size n = 300 (100 ECPs in each country).

iii. Manufacturer stated oxygen transmissibility values (Dk/t): MyDay® daily disposable (100), clariti® 1 day (86), 1-DAY ACUVUE® MOIST® (25.5), SofLens® daily disposable (24).

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