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Tips for Managing Dry Eyes with Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

September 15, 2023 by Janine Merrett


Tired woman feeling eye strain and dry eyes while holding her closed eyes.


Living with astigmatism can be challenging, but when you add the discomfort of dry eyes into the mix, it can be doubly frustrating. Contact lenses for astigmatism can be a blessing for wearers with this condition, but the wrong type of lenses can often exacerbate the issue of dry eyes. Fortunately, there are several practical solutions and products available to help you keep your eyes comfortable and moist while enjoying the clarity of astigmatism-correcting lenses. Let’s explore the common issue of dry eyes associated with these contact lenses for astigmatism and provide practical tips and recommended products for managing this discomfort.


Understanding Dry Eyes and Astigmatism

Dry eye syndrome occurs when your eyes don't produce enough tears, or when your tears evaporate too quickly. This can lead to uncomfortable symptoms such as itching, burning, redness, and a feeling of grittiness in the eyes. Astigmatism, on the other hand, is a refractive error caused by an irregularly shaped cornea or lens. When astigmatism-correcting lenses are prescribed, they help to bend light rays in a way that compensates for the irregular shape, resulting in clearer vision.

However, these specialized lenses can sometimes exacerbate dry eye symptoms. Here's why:


  • Reduced Tear Distribution - Contact lenses for astigmatism may not allow tears to spread evenly across the eye's surface due to their shape, which may lead to having dry spots on the cornea.
  • Tight Fit - Some lenses, especially rigid gas permeable (RGP) and hybrid lenses, may fit tightly on the eye. This can interfere with the natural flow of tears and cause discomfort.
  • Longer Wear Time - People with astigmatism often wear their lenses for extended periods to maintain clear vision, and this may increase the risk of dry eye symptoms.


A women putting eye drops.


Practical Tips to Address Dry Eyes with Contact Lenses for Astigmatism


  • Consult Your Eye Care Professional - The first and most crucial step when experiencing dry eyes is to consult your eye care professional. They can evaluate your specific situation and recommend personalized solutions such as suggesting different lens materials, types, or treatments tailored to your needs.
  • Choose the Right Lens Material - The material of your contact lenses plays a significant role in managing dry eyes. Some materials are better at retaining moisture and ensuring a comfortable wearing experience. Silicone hydrogel lenses, for example, are known for their breathability and ability to retain moisture, making them a suitable choice for people with dry eyes.
  • Maintain Proper Hydration - Staying adequately hydrated is essential for overall eye health and can help alleviate dry eyes. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your body, including your eyes, hydrated.
  • Follow a Blinking Routine - When you wear contact lenses, you tend to blink less frequently leading to dry eyes. Practice the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break to look at something 20 feet away and blink several times. This simple habit can help keep your eyes moist and reduce discomfort.
  • Maintain Good Lens Hygiene - Proper lens hygiene is crucial when wearing contact lenses, especially if you have astigmatism. Clean your lenses as directed by your eye care professional and be diligent about replacing them on time to prevent the buildup of debris and bacteria.


Recommended Products for Comfort

In addition to the practical tips mentioned above, several products are specifically designed to alleviate dry eyes and enhance comfort for individuals with astigmatism-correcting lenses:


  • Preservative-Free Lubricating Eye Drops: Artificial tears or lubricating eye drops are a go-to solution for dry eyes. Always opt for preservative-free varieties that provide long-lasting relief for dry eyes, as preservatives in some eye drops can irritate the eyes over time.
  • Overnight Hydration Gels: For contact lens wearers, consider using overnight hydration gels designed to moisturize your eyes while you sleep, so you wake up with refreshed and comfortable eyes.
  • Warm Compress Masks: Warm compress masks can help soothe dry eyes by improving the flow of natural oils from the eyelid glands, reducing evaporation, and increasing tear film stability.


Choose the Right Contact Lens Material for Your Astigmatism at

By following these practical suggestions, you can experience improved eye comfort. However, the best way to manage your dry eyes with astigmatism requires choosing the right material for your contact lenses. At, we offer a wide selection of contact lenses for astigmatism in various materials. From moisture-retaining hydrogels to breathable silicone hydrogels, we cater to your unique needs.

Living with astigmatism and managing dry eyes can be challenging, but with the right approach, you can enjoy clear vision and comfort simultaneously for a better quality of life.

Disclaimer: This blog is for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. Please consult with your eye care professional for personalized recommendations regarding contact lens usage and replacement intervals.

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