Did you know?
For some new scleral lens users, slightly warm saline may help with lens insertion, particularly when you’re struggling in the initial learning curve.
Why? How does it help?
If you’re properly filling your lens, the saline touches your eye before the lens does. When your eye feels the saline, it will want to blink involuntarily - especially if you have a very strong flinch reflex, or have never before worn contact lenses. Even if you manage to get your lens in, you may have spilled too much saline in the process to get it in without bubbles.
Saline that is body temperature does not trigger the same response, and that can help you re-train your eye not to flinch.
Some people keep a saline vial (unopened only, of course!) in their pocket for a bit before starting, others have reported putting it in the microwave for a few seconds. Careful though, don’t overheat it!
Struggling with insertion?
Dust off your analytical skills and isolate the problem
When I was about 12 years old and first learning to play oboe, my teacher imparted this little bit of wisdom:
“If there is something really sticky on one spot on your hand, it doesn’t do you any good to just keep washing your hands over and over and over. You have to scrub the sticky spot. Similarly, if you keep tripping up on a specific phrase or note, it doesn’t do any good to keep going back and playing the whole piece (or the whole page), over and over. You've got to isolate the problem, no matter how small, and work it out until you’ve mastered it completely, then move on and put it back in context.”
For more tips, check out the GOALS section and the TROUBLESHOOTING section in our Scleral Lens User Tutorial Part 5 - Insertion to help you isolate what's tripping you up with lens insertion.
Important safety reminder: Training, training, training!
Above all, if you have persistent troubles inserting sclerals, request additional training time. You need expert eyes on your technique. You should never feel embarrassed or hesitant to ask; this is part of your provider's obligation to you.