For patients who have recently started wearing scleral lenses, the learning curve can be steep at first. If they’ve never worn contact lenses before, they may struggle with lens insertion and removal. Even if they have worn contacts for years, using large-diameter scleral lenses is still a new experience that takes a bit of practice.
By helping your patients establish a routine for their scleral lenses from the beginning, you can increase their comfort and confidence while wearing their lenses, and reduce the chance of infections or other problems in the future.
At the final lens fitting, allow for extra time to go over cleaning and care tips and let patients practice inserting and removing their new scleral lenses. Here are some tips for communicating the most important information to patients.
Preparing Scleral Lenses
Explain the importance of thoroughly cleaning and drying hands before inserting and removing lenses. Emphasize that they should use only an approved scleral saline solution — not tap water, saliva, or any other product — to clean their lenses, using fresh solution every time they store them.
Inserting & Removing Scleral Lenses
Insertion and removal are often challenging for patients new to scleral lenses. Encourage patience and practice — soon this will be muscle memory and they will be able to take lenses in and out without difficulty. Share these tips to make the learning process easier:
- Thoroughly wash your hands with mild, lotion-free soap, and dry them with a clean, lint-free towel before inserting and removing lenses. Spray your hands with hand prep spray for an extra layer of protection.
- Hold both eyelids open, and place your head parallel with the counter holding your lenses (put a hand mirror on the counter if you need extra help).
- Place the lens in the middle of the insertion plunger, and over-fill the lens bowl with saline solution to prevent bubbles.
- Gently place the lens onto your eye with the insertion plunger, while keeping both eyelids open.
- Quickly, but gently, release the lower lid, then the upper lid once the lens touches your eye.
- Check the lens for fit and comfort. Is the lens centered? Are there no bubbles under the lens? Then you’re all set!
- If you need to adjust the lens, remove it and re-insert with fresh saline solution.
- Wet the tip of the removal plunger in saline solution.
- Hold both eyelids open and press the suction cup of the removal plunger onto the bottom, outer portion of the scleral lens.
- Gently pull the removal plunger upwards and outwards from the eye to break suction and remove the lens.
- Store your lenses in a clean case with fresh saline solution.
Products Specially Designed for Scleral Lenses
VibrantVue® — a company founded by a team of research-oriented industry professionals with more than 30+ years of expertise — has released three new products that are designed to help dry eye and specialty contact lens patients. These products are FDA-cleared and make it easy for patients to care for their scleral lenses:
Preservative-free saline solution for scleral lenses
Alcohol-free, Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) spray
Prepares hands before touching or inserting lenses
Ensures a clean environment during contact lens wear
Anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory clarifying treatment
Relieves itchy, red, irritated eyes
Prescription-strength solution for healthy eyes
For everyday use — gentle and non-irritating