Thursday, April 30, 2015

Contact Lens: Biofinity is My New BFF

My new BFF is a contact lens.
I started wearing glasses when... when I was very, very young. You can safely say that I have been wearing glasses my whole life. The weird thing is, I wanted to wear glasses even before I started wearing them. Even right before I decided to wear contacts, I never thought I looked hideous in them; in fact I thought it added dimension to my otherwise boring look. I'm so conceited tee hee.

So, when I decided to change to contacts, I wanted it to be a worthwhile change and to make sure I did it right. There was a hitch with Biomedics 38 but I have since changed to Biofinity which was in my list of possible contact lenses to try.

But first, to sum up what I wanted in a pair of contacts, I can say three things were important:
  • Comfort
  • Long-wearing
  • Able to take occasional short naps in
And Biofinity checks with all of the above.

Let's see what's inside... hmm... contacts.
In comparison with the Biomedics 38 contacts, I notice Biofinity contacts are a bit rigid. Being silicone hydrogel contacts, they are definitely unlike glass but somewhat stiffer than Biomedics 38, which are soft hydrogels.

What Do I Think of Them?
I love, love, love, love the Biofinity [VisionDirect | eBay] contacts. Did I say I love them? Yes, I love them. From the moment I put them on, they have been so comfortable that the only disappointing thing about them is when it's time to take them off.

I followed the recommended wearing time on CooperVision's Package Insert [PDF] - starting with six hours and increasing by two until it got to "all waking hours," and monitored my eyes constantly; a bit obsessively I can say, and took note of the blood vessels on the white of my eyes. I'm happy to report that the blood vessels are significantly less prominent compared to Biomedics 38.

With daily cleansing, I wore the first pair for almost a month [the right one wouldn't stay in shape a few days before the one-month mark].

Have I Slept in Them Yet?
Remember I said I wanted to take naps in my contacts? Well, Biofinity is FDA approved to be worn for six nights and seven days straight. However, I haven't slept overnight in them yet [but I have taken 45-minute to 2-hour naps in them]; the reason because as comfortable as they are, at the end of the day [literally] my blood vessels are worrying me. As I said, they are less prominent than when I was wearing Biomedics 38, but more so than when I'm not wearing any contacts; which is to be expected I suppose - you do have a foreign object in your eye. Since there is no need for me to sleep overnight in my contacts yet, I'm content with removing them daily for now.

How Long Have I Stretched These Contacts?
As I'm writing this, I have been wearing my Biofinity contacts for almost twelve hours. I have worn them for longer than that though; once going nineteen hours straight. I'm not going to lie that they stayed comfortable after so long; they did get dry and my eyes did get blurry and I couldn't blink fast enough to clear my vision, but they were bearable and if I had to wear them for that long again I would probably get some sort of a rewetting drops. It is also important to note that wind, water, debris and air-conditioners [dry air] will make these contacts uncomfortable to wear; only that in my experience, less severely so compared to when I was wearing Biomedics 38.

For anyone interested in contacts especially extended-wear contacts, please do a research on them first. It is always a good thing to make an informed decision.

Have you worn your contacts continuously for more than a day?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Biomedics 38 Soft Contact Lens: My Second First Contacts

Soft contacts live here.
I had my first encounter with contact lenses more than a decade ago. It was a few months trial and believe it or not I don't even remember the contacts brand. The trial was not a failure but I never felt there was a need for me to make a full transition as I was happy with my glasses.

Biomedics 38 by CooperVision is the first brand of contact lens I bought and tried after that trial. After an episode of uncomfortable glasses, which you can read here, I decided to try contacts once again and this time hopefully for good.

I like to do some research before I do or purchase anything important, and it was no different when I decided to try contacts once again. I had a few contacts in mind, but during the purchase, when I asked if they had extended-wear contacts, I was told that they had not had those in stock in a long time. I was recommended Biomedics 38 instead for monthly contacts. I agreed since I didn't know how my eyes would react extended-wear or not.

Just to make things clear, the Biomedics 38 contacts are not for extended wear.

First Contact
When I first tried them on, there was a slight itch on my eyelids. But I was so happy to finally not wearing my glasses that I didn't mind at all, besides it was only slight and very bearable; and I thought I was getting used to the lenses.

I wore the contacts for twelve hours straight, which is not recommended for first time users - you should ease your eyes into it, increasing wear time as you go.

The Itch Did Not Persist, Blurriness Ensued
Wearing the contacts daily, a few days into it, the itch became less noticeable - maybe I got used to it; but another problem emerged. It became increasingly difficult for me to focus and my vision got blurry as the day went on. Still a newbie to this, I had to search what could be causing the blurriness, and according to 1800Contacts, it could be a number of things which include deposits on the lenses and dryness of the lenses and eyes - both of which I think applied to me.

I See Blood Vessels
Right from the get go I monitored my eyes every few hours just to see if anything changes. I started to notice [more] visible blood vessels in the white of my eyes, which indicated to me that my eyes needed more oxygen since blood carry err... oxygen.

Now, when we start to pay attention to something we wouldn't normally do, sometimes we might 'notice' something that is otherwise normal. So, I was careful to compare my eyes with contacts and without contacts. Having said that, cutting the wear time might solve this problem but that means more time with my glasses. Do. Not. Want.

The Verdict
By the end of first week, my eyes got uncomfortable after three hours of wear; and the blood vessels kind of worried me. That's when I decided to try new contacts - the one I wanted to wear in the first place; and my experience with Biomedics 38 ends here.

I will write about my next contacts [which I love] in my upcoming post. Stay tuned!