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Scleral

Keratoconus and Coronavirus

Middle Aged Couple Multifocal ContactsKeratoconus refers to the thinning and elongation of the cornea, the transparent layers over the eye, into a cone-like shape. That results in blurred vision. Other symptoms include vision difficulties at night and objects appearing to have a glare or halos around them.

If you have keratoconus, several options are available.

For a mild or moderate condition, eyeglasses or soft contact lenses will help. Some people do better with rigid gas permeable (hard) contact lenses. If contact lenses hurt your cornea, scleral lenses are recommended. They vault over the cornea and rest on the sclera, the white part of the eye. For more severe cases of keratoconus, laser treatment and corneal transplants are recommended.

Hygiene for Scleral-Lens Wearers in the Coronavirus Era

As always, hygiene is paramount when you handle and wear scleral lenses, as it is with soft and hard lenses. This means thoroughly washing your hands before touching the lenses, and cleaning and rinsing the lenses with recommended solutions.

Wearing sclerals and other contact lenses during the coronavirus pandemic remains as safe as ever, but it’s even more important now to observe hygiene guidelines. In fact, you can take extra precautions to lower the risk of inadvertently transmitting the coronavirus to your eyes, from where it can enter your body.

Consider taking these additional preventative steps:

  • Use disinfectant wipes to clean the counters and other surfaces where you place the scleral-lens cases and solutions. This includes disinfecting the cases and containers of solutions before using.
  • Wash your hands before touching your eyes or removing your lenses.
  • Don’t touch the area on/near your eye and then someone else’s, or vice versa.
  • Avoid rubbing your eyes to prevent keratoconus from developing or worsening, while also reducing the risk of getting infected by coronavirus.

If you have keratoconus and are concerned about maintaining your optical health while reducing the risk of coronavirus, contact us.

 


Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric treats patients with keratoconus in Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .

References:

Succeeding With Sclerals

Succeeding With ScleralsHealthy corneas normally bend incoming light toward the retina so we can see clearly. However, certain corneal conditions, such as keratoconus and astigmatism, lead the light’s path to the cornea to diffuse, resulting in reduced and blurred vision.

That’s precisely what happened to three patients: Ben, Georgette, and Fred, who have irregular corneas that caused them to struggle with their vision. Thanks to scleral lenses, they and countless other patients with corneal conditions have experienced improved visual clarity, sharper focus and unparalleled comfort. But before we delve into their stories, what are scleral lenses and how exactly do they benefit those with irregular corneas?

Irregular Corneas and Scleral Lenses

Irregularly shaped corneas are most commonly caused by or associated with astigmatism, keratoconus, prior eye surgeries (such as LASIK, cataracts, corneal transplant), trauma, scarring, and pellucid marginal degeneration.

Irregular corneas cannot be corrected with eyeglasses or traditional contact lenses. An excellent non-surgical solution is scleral lenses, which provide clear vision and better comfort while keeping your eyes hydrated throughout the day.

The lenses vault over the cornea and rest on the sclera, the white part of the eye, which prevents corneal irritation. The liquid reservoir fills in the surface irregularities of the cornea, restoring vision and enabling the eye to comfortably heal. The smooth optical surface replaces the distorted corneal surface, resulting in dramatically improved vision and comfort.

Read how scleral lenses have helped address Ben’s, Georgette’s, and Fred’s irregular corneas, and enabled them to experience improved vision and a higher quality of life.

*These patient testimonials are meant to reflect actual testimonials of patients but not necessarily our patients.

Everything Is Now in Focus for Ben

Ben entered college excited for life’s newest adventure. He made friends and studied hard. But his struggle to read the content on the classroom whiteboard and in his textbooks presented the same challenges he’d experienced for much of his life.

“Here we go again,” Ben thought. Ben had astigmatism, meaning that his corneas were unevenly curved. As a result, images and texts appeared blurry. To see clearly, he resorted to squinting, which, in turn, led to frequent headaches.

Although Ben had regularly been updating his eyeglass prescription over the years, and tried wearing standard contact lenses, he still struggled with his vision. “Enough is enough,” Ben decided. “It’s time to consult a vision expert!”

That’s when Ben went to see his eye doctor, who suggested he wear scleral lenses to help see clearly with his astigmatism.

The scleral lenses worked wonders by allowing Ben’s eyes to properly focus light to the retina. Several appointments with his eye doctor ensured that the scleral lenses were fit just right. Ben can now see clearly and effortlessly, read the board and his textbooks, all of which have enabled him to graduate from college with honors.

If you or your child have astigmatism, make your life easier by following in Ben’s steps and ask Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson about scleral lenses.

For Georgette, Sclerals Are the Perfect Fit

Just imagine how Georgette felt, at age 15, when she was diagnosed with keratoconus.

No one wants to hear that their cornea is thinning and gradually bulging outward into a cone shape. But that’s exactly what happened to Georgette. Because keratoconus causes blurred vision and sensitivity to light, Georgette often found herself squinting to help her see clearly.

That’s when her eye doctor suggested scleral lenses. Having never worn contact lenses, Georgette hesitated, then reconsidered. “Let’s do it,” she concluded.

Georgette left her eye doctor with her new pair of custom-fit scleral lenses, fully excited at the prospect of experiencing a great vision. Thanks to sclerals, she not only sees clearly but now finds her eyes to be significantly less sensitive to light, which allows her to enjoy the outdoors during the day.

Fred Likes What He Sees Following His Corneal Transplant

“It still hurts,” Fred complained as he looked into his eyes in the mirror.

The corneal transplant he underwent 10 months earlier effectively addressed his corneal scars following a workplace accident. Fred recovered as the operation’s physical effects receded. Post-operative medications prevented not only inflammation and infection, but also the rejection of his newly transplanted corneas. However, the standard contact lenses he began using a few months after the transplant were painful to wear, and his irregular astigmatism—far from corrected—continued to cause fluctuating vision.

Imagine Fred’s excitement at learning that scleral lenses enable clear and painless vision for keratoplasty (corneal transplant) patients like himself. He read a 2016 study published in the Eye & Contact Lens journal that found that sclerals in post-keratoplasty patients are safe and effective, with most patients attaining 20/40 vision or better.

How did things turn out? With attentive care, really well. Fortunately, Fred now experiences both comfort and excellent vision with scleral lenses.

Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric offers scleral lenses to patients from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Sacramento, and throughout California .

REFERENCES

When All Other Contacts Have Failed, Scleral Lenses May Be the Answer

Girl Beach Contact Lenses

Sclerals vs. Standard Lenses

Standard contact lenses — be they soft, rigid gas permeable, or disposable — are the most popular choice for people with refractive errors who don’t want to wear glasses. But because standard lenses rest directly on the cornea, they aren’t a good fit for people with very dry eyes or irregularly shaped corneas.

Patients who have an irregular cornea find scleral lenses to be ideal. They have a larger diameter than standard lenses that allows them to vault over the cornea and rest on the sclera (the white part of the eye). Because they form a dome over the cornea, scleral lenses protect it from scratches and abrasions.

Scleral lenses also store saline solution between the back of the lens and the front of the cornea. As a result, the eye’s surface stays lubricated, maximizing comfort. Vision remains reliable, too.

Because scleral lenses are larger than standard lenses and custom-fitted to the eye, they are more stable and less likely to pop out. Scleral lenses correct astigmatism even in people with highly irregular corneal surfaces.

Sclerals are often prescribed for patients who suffer from dry eye or other complications following LASIK or other corneal surgeries.

Because scleral lenses are custom made and comfort is paramount, they might require several visits to get the fit just right. To learn if you have a corneal condition that requires scleral lenses, visit Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric. We help patients from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .

References:

 

Scleral Lenses Can Prevent Dry Eye, Tiredness, and Discomfort

protect your eyes 640x350It’s not uncommon for certain contact lens wearers to suffer from eyes that feel dry, red, itchy, uncomfortable, and at times very painful. Eye drops and artificial tears can deliver relief, but they are no more than a temporary solution.

One of the best contact lenses for optimal comfort and hydration are scleral lenses, as they simultaneously provide vision correction, protect the eyes, and lubricate them.

What are Scleral Lenses?

These rigid gas permeable lenses have an extra-wide diameter that vaults over your whole cornea. In contrast to other contact lenses, they rest on the white part of your eyes (sclera) and not the cornea. As a result, scleral lenses consistently rank at the top of the charts when it comes to providing sharp visual acuity, comfort, and healthy eyes.

Common Contact Lens Complaints

Below we’ll explore the most common contact lens complaints we hear at our practice and ways scleral lenses can prevent them.

End-of-day tiredness and dry eyes

After just 6 to 8 hours of contact lens wear during the day, many contact lens wearers experience tired and dry eyes. Though standard hydrogel contact lenses allow a high concentration of oxygen to permeate the eye, some people need an alternative.

End-of-day eye discomfort can be resolved with scleral lenses, as these custom-designed lenses have a liquid reservoir between the lens and the cornea that provides a continuous moist environment that soothes tired, dry eyes.

Not only does this cushion of moisture lead to a comfortable wearing experience; it also promotes healthy eyes throughout the day, allowing you to wear these lenses for 12 to 14 hours! It is for this reason that many of our patients turn to scleral lenses for unparalleled comfort and all-day ocular hydration.

Chronic dry eye syndrome

Certain dry eye patients may experience painful, red, and swollen eyes. For them, traditional soft contact lenses can be unbearable because they sit right on the irritated cornea. Moreover, these contact lenses tend to act as sponges, soaking up the moisture from the surface of the eye.

If you struggle with dry eye syndrome and have been looking for a more effective treatment method beyond eyedrops and artificial tears, ask your Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric doctor about scleral lenses.

Feeling the contact lens in the eye

Feeling your contact lenses in your eyes often indicates a poor fitting. Everyone’s eyes are different and when it comes to contact lenses, no size fits all. Furthermore, if lenses are insufficiently curved, they can be dislodged with every blink. This isn’t just uncomfortable — the wrong size lens can damage your cornea.

Because scleral lenses have a large diameter and are custom-made to your eye shape and size, it is almost impossible for scleral lenses to dislodge during normal wear. And since these lenses do not make contact with the surface of your cornea, there is a decreased risk of corneal abrasions.

Operating in dusty environments

Dry, dusty or dirty conditions can cause contact lenses to not only dry out, but can also lead irritants to attach themselves to the lenses. Scleral lenses offer comfort, even in dusty or dirty environments. This is because the lenses cover a large area of the eye, and since the outer layer of the lens protects the eye surface, dust and tiny particles can’t reach it. While not a complete barrier, scleral lenses can provide you with more relief and all-day comfort than traditional lenses.

If you’ve tried traditional contact lenses and have experienced any of the above, or if you’re simply seeking a more comfortable alternative to wear all day, it’s worth considering scleral lenses.

Contact a knowledgeable and experienced eye care professional, Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson, who will patiently assess and explain your condition to you. Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson will perform a specialized scleral lens custom-fitting to ensure that you receive the best fit for optimal visual clarity and comfort.

Call the Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric today to schedule your consultation. We help patients from the Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, and Elk Grove, in the California area enjoy great vision and comfort with scleral lenses.

 

World Keratoconus Day!

World Keratoconus Day (KC Day) 2019 is just a few months away. This day gives us the opportunity to raise awareness about the condition and what can be done to prevent it. caucasian woman with eye chart in background 

What Is KC Day?

World KC Day will take place on November 10th, 2019. It is a day set aside and sponsored by the National Keratoconus Foundation, an educational program of the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute, UC Irvine, to raise awareness about keratoconus (KC). World KC Day is dedicated to educating the world about keratoconus and advocating for individuals living with the condition.

The foundation has been responsible for many actions aimed at increasing awareness about the condition and helping to fund scientific research into the causes and treatment of keratoconus.

About Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a non-inflammatory eye condition in which the cornea, which is typically dome-shaped, progressively thins and weakens, causing a cone-like bulge to develop in the area where the cornea is thinnest (usually in the center).

Keratoconus is a degenerative condition which is believed to affect 1 out of every 2,000 people in the general population. It is found in all parts of the world and in all ethnic groups. If the right treatment is not offered in time, KC can result in significant vision loss and legal blindness.

Illustration of keratoconus

Scleral Lenses As A Possible Solution For Keratoconus

When individuals are diagnosed with KC, there are a number of possible treatments that can be employed, one of which is the use of scleral lenses. The type or stage of keratoconus will normally determine the design of lenses to use. What matters most is what fits the patient’s eye, corrects vision, and offers comfortable wear. Scleral lenses are always helpful tools. These large diameter lenses rest on the sclera and vault over the cornea. They have several advantages, including the fact that dust and dirt particles cannot get under them when the patient is wearing them.

Staying Updated

You can stay up-to-date with keratoconus news, events, and other important information. Visit the NKCF website (www.nkcf.com) for additional information. You can also join some keratoconus groups on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms.

How You Can Get Involved

Anyone can help spread keratoconus awareness. In fact, everyone is encouraged to get involved. Some of the simplest ways include sharing messages via social media and using the hashtag #WorldKCDay. You can also talk to family and friends about the condition and encourage them to help spread the word, too. Share your stories, struggles, and successes to support others with keratoconus.

Act Now

KC is a serious eye condition that needs more attention than it currently gets. You can help make 2019 World Keratoconus Day a bigger success than ever before. If you suffer from keratoconus or know someone who struggles with their vision, contact EYEcenter Optometric today.

Our eye doctors are available to speak with you and examine your eyes. We serve both adults and young patients at our vision care center!

Why Choose an Optometrist who Specializes in Contacts vs Ophthalmologists

Gril with dark-colored eyes, brown hairYou need new contact lenses or maybe you’re just trying them out for the first time. How do you know who to turn to for the best advice and the right fit?

At Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric, we specialize in contact lenses, especially for patients who may have difficulty wearing them due to eye disease, high refractive errors, misshapen corneas, and more.

Differences In Eyecare Professionals

Before knowing where to turn, it’s important to understand the difference in eye care professionals.

What Is An Ophthalmologist?

An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who is licensed to practice medicine and perform vision-related surgical procedures. They receive years of advanced medical training to diagnose eye diseases and provide treatments, conduct scientific research on vision disorders, and prescribe medications for their patients.

Ophthalmologists could fit patients with eyeglasses and contacts, but often they refer to an optometrist on their team to correct patients’ refractive errors, such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism, or presbyopia (farsightedness due to aging). Often, optometrists are the ones who screen patients for LASIK candidacy and will work alongside LASIK surgeons to coordinate the surgery.

What Is An Optometrist?

An optometrist is a healthcare professional who is licensed to provide vision care. This typically involves eye exams, vision tests, and diagnoses of eye diseases and conditions. Optometrists specialize in fitting patients with glasses or contacts for common refractive errors, while ophthalmologists focus on their areas of expertise

Why Choose An Optometrist?

Happy girl with fingers near eyesWhile an ophthalmologist is ideal for the treatment of severe eye diseases, vision disorders, and eye surgery, an optometrist is ideal for contact lenses. That’s because general vision care is the primary service that they offer their patients.

Think of your optometrist like a primary care physician for your eyes. When you need an eye checkup, if you notice your vision changing, or if your child isn’t seeing the board clearly in school, that’s when you visit the optometrist.

Getting The Right Fit

Contact lens fittings are one of the most common eye care-related services. In fact, the CDC (The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) estimates that 45 million Americans wear contact lenses, which means there are a lot of people getting fitted for contacts.

Whether you’re a first-time lens wearer or you’ve recently had a prescription change, it’s essential to ensure proper fit. Improper fitted lenses are not only uncomfortable, they can lead to vision problems, infections, or scarring. That’s where we come in.

First, Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson will perform a detailed eye exam to check your level of refractive error, and if you’re an existing patient, to see if your prescription has changed. The doctor will also check for any conditions that could interfere with contact lenses. The shape of your eye and personal lifestyle are also important factors. So if you spend more time outdoors or in more active environments, that may require a different lens type. The doctor will ensure the best fit for your eye and overall visual health.

Your optometrist will teach you how to put the lenses in and take them out, how to properly clean and store them, and other general care tips. Additional follow-up may be needed as we monitor the condition of your lenses and your prescription needs.

Little girl with blue eyes

Can My Child Wear Contacts?

Children can wear contact lenses, depending on their age and level of responsibility. Contacts may be a good solution for kids with vision problems, especially among the teen and tween set who tend to be more concerned over their appearance. Contacts are generally recommended for kids between the ages of 11-14, but it’s always recommended to speak with your eye doctor for any specific questions.

Let us know how we can help with your contact lens wear. Contact Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric for a consultation today.

Scleral Lenses Help Even Dry Eyes!

woman applying eyedroppers, close upWhen it comes to having dry eyes, you’ve probably tried everything you can think of to get some relief. From artificial tears to medicated drops, and maybe even homeopathic remedies, nothing seems to give you long-term relief.

Until now.

Scleral lenses may just be the solution you’ve been looking for. At Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric, we can help alleviate your dry eye pain with custom-made scleral lenses.

What Are Scleral Lenses?

Like standard soft contact lenses, scleral lenses sit on your eyeball and correct refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism. But that’s where the similarities end.

Scleral lenses are made with rigid materials, giving them a smooth, round shape that stays in place. They feature a large diameter, covering the entire area of the sclera (the white part of the eye), but without touching the surface of the cornea. This unique design allows for an ultra-comfortable fit.

But what really sets them apart from other contact lenses is the built-in reservoir of artificial tears, which provides a constant source of lubrication to the eyes.

Common Symptoms of Dry Eyes

woman wiping her eyes with a tissueDry eyes cause a number of painful symptoms. The most common signs of dry eye include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Burning sensation
  • Gritty feeling
  • Itchy eyes
  • Redness
  • Stinging
  • Soreness
  • Watery eyes

Scleral lenses are an excellent treatment option due their large shape, unique features, and customized fitting for each patient. Talk to Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson to see if scleral lenses can help with your dry eye.

Scleral Lenses Can Treat Dry Eye

A tiny pool of solution inside the scleral lens is located in the space between the back surface of the lens and the front area of the cornea. As the cornea is coated with these artificial tears, it remains moisturized for longer stretches of time than basic contact lenses. In fact, most of our patients can wear scleral lenses comfortably for up to 14 hours. This results in continuous relief for dry, irritated, and scratchy eyes.

Are Scleral Lenses Right for You?

So how do you know if scleral lenses are the right choice? First, think about what you’ve been using until now. Maybe you apply a cool compress to ease the soreness or burning sensation. It feels better for a little while, but then the symptoms return. Maybe you keep a small bottle of artificial tears in your purse or pocket and use them whenever your eyes feel gritty or dry, but you find that happening more and more often. Have you been told that you’re a ‘hard to fit’ patient? Then perhaps it’s time for something different and tailor-made for you.

Why Are Scleral Lenses Custom-Made?

Woman Putting in ContactNo two patients are alike, and neither are their corneas. Like a fingerprint, each person’s cornea has unique curves and contours, which are even more pronounced when someone has a misshapen cornea. That’s why Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson performs a specialized, custom-fitting, to ensure you receive the best fit for optimal visual clarity. Talk about a personalized experience!

Our scleral lens patients enjoy improved visual clarity, sharper focus, and relief for burning, red, and itchy eyes. If you’ve tried standard soft contact lenses or eye drops without any easing of your Dry Eye symptoms, it’s time to try something new. Say goodbye to Dry Eye pain and hello to long-lasting relief with scleral lenses.

Ask Our Citrus Heights Eye Doctors: Is There A Cure For Keratoconus?

Night Driving with Keratoconus

Is your vision blurry or cloudy? Is it hard to drive at night because you can’t clearly make out street lights or other cars? Do you get headaches a lot, especially when reading? Does your prescription change every time you visit your eye doctor?

If you’ve had keratoconus for a while, you know how much these things affect your life every day. Maybe you’re on your way to an important meeting and feel frustrated at the difficulty you have driving there. Perhaps reading your favorite book has become painful (or you avoid it completely). Sound familiar? We can help.

Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson and the knowledgeable, caring staff at Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric treat patients from the entire Sacramento, California area. Even if you’ve tried other solutions without any improvement, talk to us.

Is There A Cure For Keratoconus?

Unfortunately, there is no known cure for keratoconus. But don’t lose hope! Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson’s goal is to manage your condition by giving you the right tools for clear vision. Scleral lenses are one of the best, most effective ways to do that.

Do Scleral Lenses Cure Keratoconus?

If your case of keratoconus is at an early stage, standard eyeglasses and contact lenses may be enough. But once your condition starts to progress, you’ll find that even with basic glasses and contacts, blurry vision, headaches, and other symptoms are still there. That’s when scleral lenses can help.

Since keratoconus is caused by an irregular shaped cornea, these custom-made lenses are especially effective. Scleral lenses gently reshape your cornea into its proper round shape, letting light incorrectly, resulting in clear vision. While scleral lenses don’t cure keratoconus, they can give you better vision.

Does Corneal Crosslinking Cure Keratoconus?

Corneal Crosslinking, also called CXL, can be a great option for treating keratoconus. That’s because this procedure makes the cornea flatter and stronger, changing it to a rounder shape, which improves your vision.

However, CXL is not a cure. It is a minimally invasive, in-office procedure involving numbing eye drops and a special UV light. Corneal Crosslinking may prevent your cornea from developing into a cone shape, but it does not completely restore any previous effects of the condition. You may still need to wear glasses or contacts to see clearly even after undergoing CXL.

Do Intacs Cure Keratoconus?

Intacs® are tiny devices that are placed inside the cornea to gently flatten and reshape it. It’s a surgical procedure performed by your eye doctor. It doesn’t cure keratoconus, though. It can give you clear vision so long as the devices remain in place. If they’re removed at some point, your vision will go back to what it was before. In some cases, your eye doctor will recommend other treatments in combination with Intacs to boost the chances of success.

Why Is There No Cure For Keratoconus?

Mother and daughter hugging

Keratoconus isn’t a condition that can be permanently treated with medications or surgery. It’s a chronic eye disorder, which unfortunately means it’s for life. The most advanced medical options aren’t magic. It takes time, patience, and the determination to find the right solution for you.

The doctor’s ultimate goal is to give you the best vision possible, whether you have a mild or advanced case of keratoconus. At Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric, we see patients with keratoconus all the time, so even after treatment, you won’t be alone. We’ll continue to monitor your condition as time goes on.

When Will There Be A Cure For Keratoconus?

There’s simply no way to know. Doctors, researchers, hospitals, universities, and pharmaceutical companies are all working together to create new technologies and advanced solutions in the hopes of finding a cure.

Can Keratoconus Go Away On Its Own?

Keratoconus does not fade on its own. The shape of your cornea can’t permanently change, even with medications, special contact lenses, or surgery. Remember, we have various options for reshaping your cornea, but keratoconus is a chronic, lifelong disorder.

So don’t wait until things get worse. Talk to us about how we can help you now. Let us give you a better vision today.

Request An Appointment Call Our Offices

This Contact Lens Can Actually Treat Dry Eye Syndrome!

something in my eyeWearing traditional contact lenses can be a convenient method of correcting vision — unless you are suffering from dry eye. Dry eye symptoms, such as red, itchy eyes, or a feeling of having something in your eye, tend to worsen when wearing traditional contact lenses.

There is, however, one type of lens that isn’t only comfortable to wear, but also improves vision and reduces symptoms — it’s called a scleral lens. This lens differs from a conventional contact lens in several ways, most notably in size. Scleral lenses are large custom-fit contact lenses that offer multiple benefits for people with dry eyes and a variety of other eye conditions.

If you are experiencing dry eye symptoms, speak with Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson to see whether wearing scleral lenses is the best course of action for your condition.

Dry Eye Symptoms

First things first, what does dry eye mean? If you’ve been experiencing any of these symptoms for some time, you may be suffering from dry eye syndrome:

  • Red eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Mucus in or around your eyes
  • A feeling of dust or sand in your eyes
  • Difficulty wearing contact lenses
  • Watery eyes
  • Blurred vision or eye fatigue

Why Do the Symptoms Occur?

Your eyes are usually covered with a thin film of tears to keep them lubricated and protected. If the lubrication is inadequate, that is, if the quality or quantity of the tears is out of balance, one of the above symptoms may occur.

Dry eye can have many causes, such as certain medical conditions, medications, environmental influences, hormones, and extensive exposure to blue light from digital devices. Long-time contact lens usage may also impact tear quality. Dry eye mostly affects women, particularly upon reaching menopause.

What Are Scleral Lenses?

This gas permeable contact lens is considerably larger than any other contact lens, and due to its size, a scleral lens rests on the sclera—the white part of the eye— without touching the cornea.

As mentioned earlier, when you have dry eye, the cornea is more sensitive than usual, rendering it uncomfortable when a traditional contact lens comes into contact with it. Scleral lenses, on the other hand, cause no friction to the cornea as they do not directly touch it, but rather vault right over it.

Scleral lenses were initially developed for patients who could not wear traditional contact lenses, such as those with high astigmatism, keratoconus, and other corneal irregularities. Over the years, study after study has shown that scleral lenses can improve and even treat dry eye syndrome.

How Does a Scleral Lens Treat Dry Eye?

Standard soft contact lenses absorb moisture from the eye, whereas scleral lenses provide moisture. Furthermore, when inserting a scleral lens into your eye, you first apply a saline solution, which fills the gap between the cornea and the lens. This provides moisture for the irritated eye and promotes healing.

By ensuring consistent hydration of the eye and shielding the cornea from external irritants, scleral lenses provide the eye with the conditions needed to heal. As you can see, scleral lenses can play a therapeutic role in the healing process of dry eye syndrome.

What You Need to Know About Wearing Scleral Lenses With Dry Eye

Most people find that scleral lenses are very comfortable to wear. They do not move around on the eye, and dust particles are less likely to get caught underneath. Caring for, inserting and removing a larger lens, however, involves some practice and calls for a little more caution.

One of the few side effects of dry eye is a higher production of mucus, which can accumulate underneath the lens. As a result, you may have to clean your lenses more frequently to ensure clear vision.

Eye Drops and Scleral Lenses

Artificial tears are a common treatment for dry eye, and you can use them in combination with scleral lenses. However, make sure to consult Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson regarding which drops to use for your specific case.

To further reduce symptoms and improve the quality of your tears, consider using lid scrubs regularly. Also, warm compresses can provide relief and contribute to improving the tear film.

Where Can You Get Scleral Lenses?

Scleral lenses are custom-made for each patient. At Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric, we have made scleral lens fitting one of our primary objectives, which is why our practice is equipped with the latest technology and contact lens modalities. This has enabled us to achieve positive results for our dry eye patients.

This Contact Lens Can Actually Treat Dry Eye Syndrome from EyeCarePro on Vimeo.

Contact Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson at Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric for a personal consultation and find out whether scleral lenses are a suitable option for your dry eye syndrome.

We serve dry eye patients from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .



What Is the Shape of a Healthy Eye and How Does It Affect Vision?

eyes eye care 640x350The human eye is a biological piece of functional art, capable of producing colorful moving three-dimensional images with high precision. At the same time, one can marvel at the aesthetic beauty of the human eye and its shape.

The Shape of a Healthy Eye

In a healthy and perfectly shaped eye, light passes through the cornea and crystalline lens, and is accurately focused onto the retina, located at the back of the gel-filled eyeball. This process enables an image to be passed onto the optic nerve and then the visual cortex of the brain. Accurate focus and convergence depend on the proper shape of each part of the eye. However, eyeballs can be either shortened (hyperopia) or elongated (myopia).

Unhealthy Eye Shapes That Impact Vision

The Myopic Eye

In an elongated myopic eyeball, the distance between the lens and retina is too long, leading the image to come into focus before reaching the retina. As a result, the photosensitive cells of the retina pick up a blurry image.

The Hyperopic Eye

In hyperopia or farsightedness, the opposite is the case. The eyeball is too short, as is the distance that light travels from lens to retina. Therefore, the image comes into focus behind the retina, causing distant objects to appear clear, whereas close ones do not come into proper focus.

The Cornea

While the crystalline lens is flexible and auto-adjusts its shape for proper focus, the cornea is static. A healthy cornea maintains its smooth dome shape. However, if the cornea is weak, the structure of the cornea cannot hold this round shape, causing the cornea to bulge outward and downward like a cone. Perfect curvature of the cornea ensures the correct bending of incoming light onto the lens, whereas inadequate curvature results in a refractive error.

An uneven or irregularly shaped cornea also distorts the image that forms at the retina. Common corneal irregularities include astigmatism and keratoconus.

Keratocoonus Labelled

Scleral Lenses for a Smooth Eye Shape

Scleral lenses are large contact lenses that rest on the sclera — the white part of the eye. The lenses span over the cornea, making them ideal for a deformed cornea as they even out the irregularity to create a perfectly shaped eye.

Contact Dr. Fuerst, Coen, Lilley or Larson at Specialty Lens and Keratoconus Center at EYEcenter Optometric to learn more about how your eye shape affects your vision. We’ll be happy to discuss the different correction methods available that offer you sharp, comfortable and clear vision all day, every day.

We receive clients from Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, Elk Grove, and throughout California .



 

Resources:

https://www.lasikmd.com/blog/eye-shapes-affect-vision

https://www.everydayhealth.com/vision-center/the-healthy-eye/how-the-eye-works.aspx

https://www.nvisioncenters.com/eye-shapes/

https://www.nei.nih.gov/learn-about-eye-health/eye-conditions-and-diseases/refractive-errors

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