Need Help Remembering to Replace your Contact Lenses?2:57 PM
I truly believe my patients try to keep their eyes healthy. We talk every year about the cornea getting enough oxygen under their contact lenses, and I know that my patients want to wear their contact lenses correctly so that their eyes stay healthy enough for another year of contact lens wear. Imagine how hard it is for the patient (and for the doctor for that matter) when you have to have a conversation about not being able to wear contact lenses anymore -- for a few months, or perhaps even for a lifetime depending on the amount of damage.
|This eye may look okay at first glance, but there is a huge|
scar in the central cornea! This person will never be able
to see clearly again! Via
change the lenses. If you wait until your lenses feel bad to change them, you have waited to the point that your eyes have suffered damage! And all that lack of oxygen in an old contact lens smothers your corneal nerves, so next month, you will feel even less as your eye is starving more and more for oxygen.
1) Email Based
Acuvue as a brand makes some of the hardest lenses to remember to change on time (every 2 weeks!) so I appreciate their effort to help remind patients to keep healthy since they know they have a problem with their lenses being abused. Their website Acuminder tool is free; can be used with any product (not just Acuvue lenses), and is very non-invasive. You just sign up for a monthly or 2 week email (depending on your lens) that will remind you to throw your lenses away. They also offer a text message based system.
2) SmartPhone Apps
There are number of apps out there that act as reminder alarms, but here is a breakdown of my opinion:
|Contact Lenses Timer app:|
free and simple interface
- Lens Tracker LE: Free; Simple and clean. It also tells you how many lenses you have left so you don't surprise yourself when you are on your last box.
- Contact Lens Tracker: $0.99; To me the app has a little too much data -- it can track the number of times you wear a lens as well as how old the lens is, which is information that may confuse the issue. If you have a monthly lens, you need to replace it monthly whether you wear it 28 times or 31 times. The lens deteriorates every day it is opened from the package, not just every day you wear it.
- My Contact Lens: $0.99; To me this one looks to be aimed for younger patients. It has linked data pages to tell you proper cleaning and care, removal strategies, etc.
- Contact Lenses Timer: Free; It also has a place for you to record you doctor's name and number, your brand and prescription, in case you ever need that information.
- Contact Lenses: Free; Again, too complicated with the ability to "skip a day" of wear affecting the tracker. And you have to record each eye separately.