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Most people who wear contact lenses experience a degree of intolerance to them once in a while, and find them uncomfortable to wear. However, if the situation becomes serious (contact lens intolerance – CTI), it’s time to look at exactly how you’re using your contact lenses, and consider the alternatives.
Contact lens intolerance (also known as CLI) is when you cannot put your contact lenses in without irritation or where you can only tolerate lens wear for short periods of time because of significant discomfort. Most contact lens wearers experience it occasionally, but it can reach a point where you’re no longer able to wear contacts at all.
A number of factors are thought to be linked to CLI:
Most mild cases get better by themselves, and you’ll be able to wear your contact lenses again within quite a short space of time.
If you’ve got into bad habits with your contact lenses (e.g. wearing them too long, sleeping in them), changing to better habits may well reduce the discomfort.
If you are sensitive to the lenses themselves, sometimes changing to lenses made of different materials can help.
Sometimes, it is due to a poor fit and in these cases, your contact lens specialist may help by altering the style and shape of your contacts.
Laser eye surgery is a great solution for people with contact lens intolerance, as it removes the need for contact lenses forever but may not be suitable in all cases.
If your contact lens intolerance is linked to dry eyes, you may need to have your dry eyes treated before you can have laser eye surgery. If the dryness is marked, then laser eye surgery may not be a suitable options and in these scenarios, glasses would be the answer.