Wearing Scleral Lenses for Longer
I’ve had my new scleral contact lens for over 6 months now, and whilst I’m pleased they give me really good vision, I’m still trying to find ways of being able to wear them for longer each day. My current wearing time is now up to about 10hrs a day, but some days it’s only 8 and only very occasionally I can manage 12hrs.
Obviously this restricts my activities to some extent, the most difficult thing is travelling when I’m driving to see my cousins the other side of London. I need to time my stay with them to make sure I get home before my lenses start to cloud over or become very uncomfortable. Not always an easy task, as my journey times to and fro can take from 75ms to 150mins! Such are the variations in the traffic and the roadworks that continue to plague the London driver.
I’ve been experimenting with different solutions, my choice is limited to those without preservatives, as I’m allergic to them. I settled on Lens Plus but still had discomfort after a few hours. My consultant suggested using HyloForte to help with dry eye, but it seems to cause cloudiness. So, I started looking for other solutions. I came across Hylo-Care, which is designed for both dry eye and where there has been recent surgery or damage to the outer layer of the cornea.
I’ve been using this for over a month now and it really has helped to increase my wearing time, previously I was only getting 4-6 hours, this has now doubled. I don’t think it’s just due to increased tolerance, but purely to the drops, as when I had a problem getting the Hylo-Care prescribed and I had to revert to using the Lens Plus on its own, my tolerance level reduced.
Once I’ve cleaned my lenses I use approximately 15 drops of Hylo-Care in my larger, specially moulded scleral lens, topping up with Lens Plus. I then use approximately 10 drops in my smaller, conventionally shaped scleral lens before the top up of Lens Plus. I believe this mix of solutions is working well for me, and whilst it may not work for everyone I wanted to share my success in the hope that it may help some people. Not all ophthalmic practitioners seem to have heard of Hylo-Care and at my last hospital appointment the Registrar hadn’t come across it before.
Whilst Hylo-Care is available on prescription in the UK, I don’t know what the availability is in other countries.
One other problem I have had with wearing my scleral lenses is when my eyes do get dry, the area directly around my eye gets red and sore. I’ve been trying to find a reasonably priced eye gel that will help. I’m a great Body Shop fan and decided to try Aloe Eye Defence. The label says it’s ok to use with contact lenses, but like any skin product if you put it near your eye when you’re wearing scleral lenses you are almost guaranteed to have smearing & will need to clean your lenses and re-insert them! I somehow manage to do this at least once or twice a week!
So, I just use the Aloe Eye Defence first thing in the morning, about 3 hours before putting in my lenses and then at night before going to sleep. It certainly has helped to make the skin around my eyes less red. At £10 each bottle, Aloe Eye Defence is nowhere near as expensive as many similar cosmetic products either, so worth a try.