Thread: Contact Lenses

  1. #1
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    Default Contact Lenses

    Not sure if this is where this should go...but here goes.

    Any of you guys/gals wear contact lenses and work 24 hour shifts? My lenses aren't meant to be slept in, but what am I to do? I keep the drops next to my bed, when we get frapped out in go the drops and on the way I go. Is it bad to sleep with them in?

    I only wear them when I'm riding backwards...I wear glasses when I'm on the FireMedic or driving the Engine.

    Just wanted to see what others have done...I really don't want to have to pay for the more expensive sleep lenses....just need some advice.

    Thanks

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    I payed out the extra for the 30 day leave in lenses, and it's by far the best cash I've ever spent. Until I can pack away enough cash for the newest LASIK surgury.
    "The uniform you wear was given to you. The respect that comes with it must be earned."

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    Thought i don't pull 24hr shifts on my department, I have had alot of experience with both glasses and contacts while on fire calls. Something you might want to try, as lame as it might sound, is practice puting your contacts in quickly. I can get them in, in about 6 or 7 seconds which won't cause much of a delay getting to the rig at night. If that doesn't work, make sure you keep those re-wetting drops right next to your bed so when you wake up at 3am, you can put those in quickly (you know your contacts will be as dry as the dessert!). Another option (this is what I do) is wear contacts during the day, and at night, wear glasses. Get a junky (but sturdy) eyeglass case and keep in in your bunker gear. If you're driving or need to see well while on the fire ground, keep them on. When you go to put on your SCBA, just take your glasses off and put them in the hardcase you have in your gear. When you're in a fire building you can't see anything anyway so it won't matter that you dont have your glasses on. Then as soon as you come out, put the glasses back on and go start overhaul, etc. It works for me, but it's best to try a few different meathods to see what works best for you. Just my 2 cents!

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    When you're in a fire building you can't see anything anyway so it won't matter that you dont have your glasses on
    Jesus wept.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeh850
    When you're in a fire building you can't see anything anyway so it won't matter that you dont have your glasses on.
    I wish I had a penny for every time I heard that, and 2 pennies hearing it from people with 20/20 vision or better. I too wear glasses/contacts. But, what Jeh850 said is about right as far as what you can do to work around your vision woes.

    We're trained to rely on sense of touch, but suppose for a moment that there is a clearing under the smokescreen, I don't want to be the guy who can't take advantage of this rare gift to firefighters because I left my glasses lying on the dash of the engine so I could wear my facepiece. So, I too am saving my pennies for the LASiK vision correction. (There is a doctor near me who offers discounts for firefighters, police, military, etc., but he specializes in LASeK, which is like LASiK but with a laser, instead of a blade. I'm not too sure which is more effective, but for that kind of money, I want it to work). Even if you wear contacts, the constant air flow can dry out your eyes, and I've actually had a contact fall out of my eye during overhaul. (The guys couldn't figure out why I was missing the drywall with the pike pole and stabbing short at thin air ).
    "Yeah, but as I've always said, this country has A.D.D." - Denis Leary

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    Default Same here

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeh850
    ... practice puting your contacts in quickly. I can get them in, in about 6 or 7 seconds which won't cause much of a delay getting to the rig at night...
    This is what I do for night calls. It is definitely worth the extra couple seconds to be able to see what I am doing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scote3232
    Not sure if this is where this should go...but here goes.

    Any of you guys/gals wear contact lenses and work 24 hour shifts? My lenses aren't meant to be slept in, but what am I to do? I keep the drops next to my bed, when we get frapped out in go the drops and on the way I go. Is it bad to sleep with them in?

    I only wear them when I'm riding backwards...I wear glasses when I'm on the FireMedic or driving the Engine.

    Just wanted to see what others have done...I really don't want to have to pay for the more expensive sleep lenses....just need some advice.

    Thanks

    My advise is to get a prescription lens insert for your SCBA mask. I face the same problem with contacts. I can see fine up close, but no so well at a distance. At night, I take my contacts out before going to bed. If we get a call, I take my glasses with me. If the call requires me to pack up, I'll leave my glasses on the rig, or put them in the radio pocket on my coat.
    Last edited by OSD122; 12-07-2006 at 11:05 AM.

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    Cool no problem

    I have it down to 5-10 sec to put my lenses in and I usually beat the 20/20 guys to the rig. I have the case and solution laying out on the desk next to my bed along with my glasses just in case. I also have MSA lens kit when I have to wear my glasses and it works great.

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    Talk to your eye doctor about Night & Day lenses. I switched a year ago. They're meant to last about a month...and you can leave them in up to a week at a time. I take them out at night as much as possible....but sleeping in them has not been a problem and they don't dry out as badly as regular lenses. They breathe quite well and allow more oxygen to reach your eye which helps to prevent eye fatigue.

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    Smile Night & Day

    I too wear Night & Day contacts and before I got them I could never leave my contact in overnight, now I can leave them in for 30 + days very easily. I only take them out for an occasional cleaning...good luck

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    I dont have the night/day contacts.

    And I dont take mine out during the night.

    And I dont use eye drops.

    I just have someone lead me out to the truck and tell me when to turn left and right.......






    Okay so that isnt all true..... The first part is

    It takes me a lil bit to get adjusted to sudden light

    but for the most part, I have no problem with my eyes

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeh850
    When you're in a fire building you can't see anything anyway so it won't matter that you dont have your glasses on.
    I've never understood how anyone who wears glasses/contacts could make such a statement. I've never been in a fire where there was zero visibility the entire time I was in the fire building. When the smoke clears -- if only for a moment -- I want to see whatever I can.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cozmosis
    I've never understood how anyone who wears glasses/contacts could make such a statement. I've never been in a fire where there was zero visibility the entire time I was in the fire building. When the smoke clears -- if only for a moment -- I want to see whatever I can.
    cozmosis -

    you do have a point -- I think I overstated my point in the above post. Though I wear glasses/contacts, my vision is good enough where I can see quite well without them and would have no issues seeing in a fire. For those whose vision makes them virtually blind without visual aid's, it's true, being able to see during those brief periods in a fire building could mean you see a possible escape route or even a vic. Good point, thanks for catching me on it.

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    I have been wearing the Ciba O2 Optix for 2 years without any problems. I wear the lenses for 7 days then soak them in cleaner for 8 hours. Wear them another 7 days, throw them away and give my eyes another 8 hour break. Cost is $24.00 for 6 lenses from my eye doctor. So it works out to $4.00 a week. You can buy the lenses cheaper on the internet. I work a rotating 12 hour shift in a chemical plant so I wanted something that I could wear all the time. I am also a volunteer firefighter and have worked several structure fires in these. I have not had any problems using an airpack with these lenses and I like the fact that when I take off the pack, I don't have to find my glasses so I can see what is going on.

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    Thanks all....I have a call into my Dr. now to request the O2 Optix....just for night time.

    Stay safe.

  16. #16
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    Default Accuview

    I just wear the Accuview Hydraclear lenses. We don't sleep for more than an hour or two at a time ay night anyway so they dont tend to dry out. I tried the day/night leave in lenses and just could not get used to the different materiel.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scote3232
    Any of you guys/gals wear contact lenses and work 24 hour shifts? My lenses aren't meant to be slept in, but what am I to do? I keep the drops next to my bed, when we get frapped out in go the drops and on the way I go. Is it bad to sleep with them in?
    It's very bad to sleep in them. You could end up damaging your corneas to the point where you can't wear contacts anymore -- or worse. Get overnight lens or take your lenses out at night and keep your glasses by the bed. (If you're in an OSHA state, your FD is responsible for supplying you with an SCBA mask with corrective lenses, BTW.)

    The price difference between day-wear-only and overnight (or even bi-weekly or monthly wear) lenses is miniscule if you just shop around and well worth the difference.

    Take it from someone who's been wearing contacts overnight at the firehouse since before it was legal to wear them on duty at all...
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    Default Re: contacts, etc

    DeputyMarshal,
    I have questions regarding the eye exam for a CT fire dept. Can I email you?

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    Quote Originally Posted by soboss34 View Post
    DeputyMarshal,
    I have questions regarding the eye exam for a CT fire dept. Can I email you?
    Sure. (From what I've seen, vision requirements in CT vary wildly...)
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

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    Quote Originally Posted by OSD122 View Post
    My advise is to get a prescription lens insert for your SCBA mask. I face the same problem with contacts. I can see fine up close, but no so well at a distance. At night, I take my contacts out before going to bed. If we get a call, I take my glasses with me. If the call requires me to pack up, I'll leave my glasses on the rig, or put them in the radio pocket on my coat.
    i know in rhode island they are required to buy you the insert for your scba mask, i'm not to sure about others, you might want to check into that too

  21. #21
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    Wearing contact lenses for an extended period of time and during sleep results in something called neovascularization. Basically when your cornea is covered by the contact lens it receives less oxygen than normal, even less when you're sleeping and your eyes are closed. To compensate for this new blood vessels extend into the cornea to deliver more oxygen. When you remove the lens the blood vessels retract but the tunnels that they "dig" in your eye may still be there to impair your vision. The newer lenses are supposed to be more permeable to allow more oxygen into your eye but I personally don't know if I would trust them. I use daily disposable lenses and take them out before I go to sleep, and keep a pair of glasses around for night time calls. Occassionally I'll take the extra time to put in the contacts if it sounds like work.

    http://www.emedicine.com/oph/topic466.htm

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    If you have the opportunity, definitely get the laser correction surgery. I did, and I am glad I got it. Check into financing the procedure. I got mine done in August with 50 bucks down and I am paying about 90 a month interest free for 18 months.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BUGGY5632 View Post
    If you have the opportunity, definitely get the laser correction surgery. I did, and I am glad I got it. Check into financing the procedure. I got mine done in August with 50 bucks down and I am paying about 90 a month interest free for 18 months.
    I'm worried about the long-term success rate of the laser corrective surgery. Sure, I know guys that are loving it now... But what about five years from now? I haven't seen enough research to make me feel warm and fuzzy about it -- although I would love to have it.

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