Red eyes are never a good sign and even less so if you're a wearer of contact lenses. There are a number of reasons for red eyes. It could be something as simple as wearing them too much or there could be another reason causing red eyes. However, there could be something more going on that will require your immediate attention.
Your red eyes could simple be caused by dryness of the eyes. This problem often increases throughout the day. Your eyes may feel scratchy and irritated at first and then be red and become uncomfortable. Eye drops may ease the dryness, but you may need to consider changing the type of contact lenses you wear (dailies, monthly, 2 week) or only use them for part of the day.
CLARE stands for contact lens induced red eye and it is a condition caused by bacteria. Normally, blinking flushes the bacteria, and the toxins that build with it, away from the eyes. However, sometimes these toxins and bacteria become trapped behind the lenses and result in the eyes becoming red and irritated. This is particularly worse for those who take naps or sleep with their contact lenses on.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis, or GPC, is common among contact lens wearers. It is an inflammation caused by having a foreign particle on the eye. The contact lens, being the foreign particle, can irritate the surface of the eye causing redness and irritation. When the irritation occurs the lens can move around the eye, further exacerbating the problem. GPC could be caused by an allergy to the contact lenses themselves or a lack of proper hygiene when it comes to cleaning and handling the contact lenses-
Contact Lenses Solution
You may have a great schedule set up when it comes to caring for your eyes and your contact lenses, but you still seem to be suffering from red eyes. Chances are, you may need to change your contact lenses solution. One or more of the substances used in producing these solutions may be causing you irritation, even if you’ve used them without problems before. Take to your eye care specialist and see if you can try a different contact lens solution. Do not use water as a makeshift solution.
Poorly Fitting Lenses
A common problem with contact lens wearers, particular first timers, is poorly fitting lenses. While most eye care specialists will give you a thorough eye examination and make sure you have the right fitting lenses and prescription, you may still end up with poorly fitting lenses. If this is the case, the lenses will not stay in place and their movement will irritate your eyes which will inevitably cause redness. If you are suffering from red eyes and irritation, make an appointment with your eye care specialist again for another examination as soon as possible.
Some people are simply more sensitive than others and simply may not be suited to wearing contact lenses. In such cases, the contact lenses are seen as a foreign particle that does not belong in the eye and the body will try and reject them. This may cause redness and irritation. Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t wear contact lenses. You may simply need to try different types until you find the right one for you.
Whatever the reason for red eyes, you should never ignore the symptoms. If the redness does not disappear within a day or two, despite what you do to ease the redness, see your eye care specialist as soon as possible. It may be a quick and simple fix, but there may be a more serious issue that you will want to take care of fast.