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Seasonal Allergies Impact on CLI

Konrad Filutowski, MD

Konrad Filutowski, MD

Allergies and Contact Lens Intolerance

Contact Lens Intolerance, or CLI, is a condition where the eye is unable to tolerate wearing contact lenses due to pain and irritation. The effects of CLI can be short-term, as a result of temporary environmental conditions such as pollen and other allergens, or long-term, causing contact lens wearers to stop wearing them entirely.


During allergy season in the U.S, a large portion of the population suffers from eye irritation and itching caused by pollen. This issue can become a particularly painful problem for those who wear contact lenses and are Contact Lens Intolerant. The itching and burning in their eyes can exacerbate the impact of the discomfort associated with CLI.


Luckily, it is easy to pinpoint when Contact Lens Intolerance is being caused by allergies. Signs of allergy-related Contact Lens Intolerance include itching, burning, and redness, specifically during allergy season.


Relieving Allergy Induced Contact Lens Intolerance

Allergy-related Contact Lens Intolerance can make it extremely uncomfortable, or even impossible, to wear contact lenses. However, there are some ways to lessen the pain and discomfort:


Cleaning lenses thoroughly: Allergens can collect and build upon the surface of contact lenses, often resulting in eye irritation during allergy season. Cleaning contact lenses properly and frequently, particularly after being outdoors, can provide temporary relief from the symptoms of allergy-related CLI.


Trying different lenses: Certain types or brands of lenses may restrict the flow of oxygen into the eyes more than others, resulting in more eye irritation. It is important to try different brands and types of contact lenses so that you can find the one that is the best fit for your eyes, one that reduces the irritation amplified by allergies.


Using antihistamine drops: Allergy eye drops if used properly and if compatible with your contact lenses, can diminish discomfort and irritation resulting from allergies. To let the eye drops have their full effect, give your eyes a break by removing your contact lenses and wearing your glasses until the irritation has subsided.


Wearing daily contacts: Daily contact lenses can be removed and disposed of quickly. This can be especially useful during allergy season as allergens build up on lenses. Daily contacts can be taken off before too many particles collect on them and cause irritation.


Seasonal Contact Lens Intolerance

Millions of people suffer from seasonal allergies. Similarly, many contact lens wearers suffer from seasonal Contact Lens Intolerance. For those facing seasonal CLI, their contact lenses don’t cause them problems for most of the year but cause them unbearable pain and discomfort when allergy season starts.


Eliminating Allergy-Related Contact Lens Intolerance

Although there are many ways to lessen the symptoms of Contact Lens Intolerance, eliminating CLI entirely with SMILE is the best option to let you see clearly and painlessly, even during allergy season.


Over four million people worldwide have regained clear vision through SMILE, the fastest-growing form of laser vision correction. The procedure is quick and there is very little recovery time required. You can get back to performing your regular duties immediately, and be free from the pain and discomfort of allergy-related Contact Lens Intolerance.

Contact lens intolerance can affect your vision and overall eye health. To learn more about contact lens intolerance or to schedule a consultation, please contact us at 800-393-3926 or click here.


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