Scleral Lenses for Dry Eye Syndrome
Those with dry eye syndrome (DES) suffer from eyes that feel dry, itchy, uncomfortable, irritated and at times very painful. Eye drops and artificial tears can deliver relief but are no more than a temporary solution. Eventually, patients with chronic dry eyes seek out more durable methods of treatment.
Scleral lenses are an excellent solution due to their large shape, unique features, and customized fitting for each patient. Though generally used to treat corneal irregularities and refractive errors, scleral lenses can also provide immense relief to dry eye patients.
Scleral lenses tackle three factors simultaneously: they provide vision correction, they protect the eye, and they serve a therapeutic purpose by lubricating the eye. Scleral lenses decrease pain, discomfort, eye redness, and itchiness while providing sharp, clear vision.
What Are Scleral Lenses?
Scleral lenses provide relief and visual rehabilitation to patients with dry eyes and corneal irregularities. These custom designed lenses vault over the cornea and rest on the sclera while avoiding the cornea. The liquid reservoir between the lens and the cornea provides a continuous moist environment that protects the cornea and provides relief for those with dry eyes.
Because these lenses are oxygen permeable, they provide the wearer with better comfort and a healthy cornea. In fact, their ability to transmit oxygen reduces eye problems, such as dry eyes, caused by diminished oxygen transmission to the cornea, which is common among most soft lens’ brands or hard (non-GP) lenses.
If you have Dry Eyes and are interested in scleral lenses, Dr. Dawn Wattenhofer can help. Experienced in fitting scleral lenses for dry eyes and other corneal conditions, Vision Source Specialists serves patients from all over Rapid City, Philip, Spearfishand Gillette, in the state of South Dakota.
Why Scleral Lenses Offer Relief to Those with Dry Eye Syndrome
Contact Lenses You Can Wear With Dry Eyes
Traditional soft contact lenses are not an option for those with dry eyes, as the lenses sit right on the cornea, which can be very irritating for dry eye patients. Moreover, they tend to act as sponges, soaking up the moisture from the surface of the eye. Wearing soft contact lenses can, therefore, prove to be virtually unbearable for the dry eye patient.
Scleral lenses, on the other hand, are comfortable since they vault over the cornea and rest on the sclera, thus avoiding the sensitive cornea.
Scleral Lenses Provide Continuous Eye Hydration
The zone between the surface of the cornea and the scleral lens is filled with a saline solution. This acts as a constant source of hydration for the eye and provides ongoing relief for the dry eye patient.
Scleral Lenses Soothe and Protect the Cornea
People with dry eyes tend to have sensitive corneas that are prone to injury. The simple act of blinking can irritate the eye or even injure the cornea due to the mechanical friction of the eyelids on the cornea. Scleral lenses prevent damage to the cornea by shielding the patient’s eyes from the friction caused by blinking and protecting it from any external irritants or dust.
If you struggle with dry eye syndrome and have been looking for a more effective treatment method beyond eyedrops and artificial tears, ask Dr. Dawn Wattenhofer about scleral lenses. We will patiently assess and explain your condition to you, and will perform a specialized, scleral lens custom-fitting to ensure that you receive the best fit for optimal visual clarity and comfort.
Call Vision Source Specialists today to schedule your consultation today.Our practice serves patients from Rapid City, Philip, Spearfish, and Gillette, South Dakota and surrounding communities.