News

  • May/15

    8

    The Dangers of Sleeping in Contacts

    While some contact lenses are approved to be worn at night, this is still not something we recommend. Sleeping in contacts that are meant for daily wear can lead to infections, corneal ulcers, and other health problems that can cause permanent vision loss.

    Contact lenses reduce the much-needed supply of oxygen to the cornea, or the surface of your eye. Normally, the cornea gets oxygen both from blood vessels in the eyelid at night and from the air during the day. A regular contact lens user relies on the nighttime supply to keep the eye healthy, so cutting off nighttime oxygen can be devastating.

    During the day, pollutants from the air get into your eyes, and some work their way under your lenses. The combination of protection of the closed eyelid, reduced movement of the eye and eyelid, and low oxygen create ideal conditions for bacterial and viral infections to grow, according to an article in Optometry and Vision Science.

    Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)

    Conjunctivitis is one of the most common, though least dangerous, consequences of sleeping in contacts, according to the American Optometric Association. Pink eye is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, which covers the white of the eye and lines the inside of the eyelid. It is usually caused by a viral infection. In addition to the cosmetic drawbacks of having oozing and discolored eyes, pink eye is often itchy and uncomfortable.

    Giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) is a special form of this disease in which bumps develop on the inner surface of the eyelid. Contact lens wearers are most affected by this disease. GPC is painful and makes your eyes sensitive to light. The first step to treatment is taking your lenses out, which actually increases the pain initially.

    Keratitis

    Keratitis is inflammation similar to conjunctivitis. It affects the cornea—the clear part of the front of your eye that you see through. In addition to common symptoms of conjunctivitis, keratitis also damages your vision. The Center for Contact Lens Research (CCLR) states that sleeping in contacts is associated with a 10 times greater risk of microbial keratitis.

    Keratitis can be caused by infections of amoebae, bacteria, and fungi. Amoebic keratitis is the most serious and causes vision loss. Contact Lens Acute Red Eye (CLARE) is keratitis often comes on suddenly during sleep, causing intense pain and sensitivity to light.

    Keratitis can cause corneal ulcers, which lead to potentially permanent blindness if not treated properly.

    Corneal Neovascularization

    Even if you avoid infection, deprivation of oxygen from nighttime contact lens wearing causes the eye to grow more blood vessels to increase the supply of blood to the cornea. Neovascularization impairs vision because vessels inhibit light from traveling through the cornea normally.

    Sleeping in contacts is not worth it, no matter how tempting it may seem. Good contact lens care is crucial to maintaining the health of your eyes.

    If you are exhausted with the hassle of contact lenses, make an appointment with Dr. Marc Moore and find out if LASIK is an option for you!

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  • May/15

    1

    Seeing beyond the blur

    Is your vision blurry or foggy?  Do colors appear dull or muted?  Are your glasses no longer working?

    Does sunlight or other light seem overly bright or glaring?  Do you have decreased night vision or see halos around lights?

    If you are experiencing one or more of these symptoms, you may have cataracts, a clouding of your eye’s natural lens that affects many of us as we age.  Cataracts are the leading cause of visual loss in adults 55 and over.

    To determine if you have cataracts and to find out what options are best for you, make an appointment with one of our doctors.

     

     

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  • Apr/15

    22

    What are these things moving around in my vision?

    Do you ever see little specks moving around in your vision?  They may even look like cobwebs or small clear bubbles, but these are often referred to as floaters.  Floaters can be very annoying and often alarming the first time you notice them.  Around 70% of people experience floaters.

    Floaters are usually made up of clumps of collagen of the vitreous.  The vitreous is the gel-like substance that makes up the majority of the eye’s interior, helping maintain its round shape.  These clumps of collagen float around aimlessly inside the eye, casting a shadow on the retina.  They are more pronounced if you are looking at something bright or white.  Floaters usually stay in your eye permanently, but over time they can become less noticable.

    If you experience a new onset of floaters, getting a dilated eye exam is recommended.  Although floaters are quite common, they can also be a symptom of something more serious.  All of our eye doctors at GGC are happy to examine your eyes!

     

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