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Contact lenses - what age?

(71 Posts)
Bonsoir Tue 04-Mar-14 21:49:15

DD is 9 and wants to try contact lenses. Has anyone's child managed contact lenses at this age?

sotiredfornow Tue 04-Mar-14 22:25:15

I started when I was 11, first year high school. I found the first few months incredibly difficult - it is not an easy process at a young age. It would sometimes take me 30 mins to put them in before school. A few times I gave up. I remember it being really stressful.

My eyes are not healthy having worn contact lenses for so long. It's a dilemma but for me personally, I would do everything to discourage contacts at that age. The later the start the better.

Does she hate wearing glasses?

My optician says not until they can reliably put them in, get them out, clean them properly (if not disposable...which are costly) and deal with emergencies such as the contact folding in half and disappearing right up the back of the eyelid. (That can and does happen with soft lenses)

I have worn them since my teens and thank god for them! BUT they are tricky at first and I honestly think 9 is too young. My DS2 recently wanted to try them as he has worn glasses since he was a baby, but he found them impossible to manage (and he was 15 at the time) ..and 6 months later his prescription has changed again and he now has such severe astigmatism that they are not possible. (With moderate or worse astigmatism you need toric lenses which are REALLY hard to get in as they are weighted.. I couldn't get his in my eye (as a test) even tho I have worn them for 28 years!)

I would really try and put her off for a few more years at least.. for eye health, hygiene and practicallity reasons. I do sympathise though.. I always hated my glasses, still only wear them late in the evenings!

workingtolive Tue 04-Mar-14 23:03:47

I was 10, never had any problems and the freedom it gave me was amazing.

Twunk Tue 04-Mar-14 23:08:57

It depends, I needed gas permeable Toric lenses which are expensive (£200 each!). If she can have disposables then she might manage though I think a bit young. She should also have plenty of rest from them - remove them at home, have days off etc.

CoteDAzur Tue 04-Mar-14 23:09:24

I was 8 when I started wearing contact lenses and never stopped.

This was a time when (soft) contact lenses were quite expensive. I was to take care of mine for two years, including de-proteining them with tablets every two weeks, etc. It was fine.

Give your DD a chance, Bonsoir. There is no downside - if it doesn't work out, she can wear glasses at that point.

Twunk Tue 04-Mar-14 23:09:41

I was a mature 12 btw when I started with them

dobby2001 Tue 04-Mar-14 23:22:22

I was first given contact lenses at the age of 5 rigid glass ones too. Yep it was tricky, my mum would come to take them out during school, as in those days you built up weaving time. But I was happily managing them by the age of 10.
I now wear rigid gas permeable and am 49 grin

butterfliesinmytummy Tue 04-Mar-14 23:28:29

My dd is 5 and has been wearing glasses for long sightedness since she was 5. Her optician said they would start to see is she is ready for the responsibility of contacts when she is 10.

thepurplepenguin Tue 04-Mar-14 23:29:47

I had hard gas permeables from 12 to 30 and now have monthly soft disposals. They have not damaged my eyes at all.

I have always found them simple to put in. Was lax about cleaning though, needed lots of nagging.

Bonsoir Wed 05-Mar-14 07:09:53

Glad to see some people managed young. There are no cost considerations at stake and she won't need gas permeable toric lenses (I wore those myself for 12 years), just disposables.

ChaosTrulyReigns Wed 05-Mar-14 07:24:49

DD3 has had them for 2 Years now quite successfully.

She took 3 appointments to get over the blink reflex and then it all fell into place.

She has disposables which she wears maximum 12 hours a day. Possibly 3 or 4 days a week. Sometimes she just puts a pair in for a few hours for a sporting event then throws them away which is fine.

Give it a try for her, but I wouldn't encourage everyday use at thus age.

ChaosTrulyReigns Wed 05-Mar-14 07:26:29

Hah! She's had them for 2 Years, and she's 11 soon. She's quite a sensible little specimen though.

TantrumsAndBalloons Wed 05-Mar-14 07:28:05

If they are daily disposables then I don't see why not.

My dd has been wearing them since age 10. It took 15 minutes for her to learn how to get them in correctly.

I am taking ds2 for a contact lense consultation next week, he is 10 and plays football so he wants to try lenses for that.

Bonsoir Wed 05-Mar-14 07:57:43

My DD is very sensible and organised and never breaks or loses anything. She might find getting them in and out a bit tricky to begin with but I have years of practice so should be able to help...

SoldeInvierno Wed 05-Mar-14 07:59:53

DS started wearing them at 9 only for rugby matches. They are daily disposables

justaweeone Wed 05-Mar-14 08:02:52

My Dd started wearing lenses at 12 but dailies a couple of times a week.She is 16 know and now wears the full time and is on a monthly plan. My son started with his when he was just 10.
Our optician says it depends on the child and the supports from parents.
We all wear lenses in our family and it costed us a fortune!

HectorVector Wed 05-Mar-14 08:04:12

I was 14. Personally I think 10 is too young. How is she generally hygiene wise? I'd be worried she wouldn't clean her hands properly or the lenses properly, so if you're going to go for anything I think you should go for daily disposables (not cheap). Has her prescription settled down or is it still changing?

Floisme Wed 05-Mar-14 08:20:34

My son started wearing them at 15. If cost is not an issue then the main concerns are about hygiene and the risk of eye infections - which can be quite nasty - but I'm sure you know that anyway if you've worn lenses yourself. I think it's more about how well organised and careful your daughter is. In fact it might even be an advantage if she hasn't reached adolescence yet as she's probably more likely to listen to your advice!

Slipshodsibyl Wed 05-Mar-14 09:09:33

Mine had disposables at 10. They don't have the struggle we had with the discomfort of the hard ones but they found inserting them tricky and I usually had to help put them in and out. For that reason they didn't wear them regularly until age 12/13 and increasing awareness/vanity/convenience for school sport etc together with dexterity meant they could do it easily.

I thought this was a good compromise as the daily disposables, after the initial few days, are comfortable enough to be worn just occasionally until they decide otherwise.

A young friend with unusually severe short sightedness has used them successfully since she was 7. It depends in motivation I think and the advantages or otherwise they perceive at that age.

Slipshodsibyl Wed 05-Mar-14 09:15:53

Just to add, I was happy to do it for them but if they struggle to manipulate the lenses, it is a problem at school . If they get something in their eye at school or if the lens slips if they rub because they aren't able to manipulate it back again, or, often to take it out themselves and wear glasses instead. All this seems to happen more with young users.

Looby12 Wed 05-Mar-14 09:22:29

DD got hers on her 11th birthday, disposable ones as I knew she would not do well with looking after the other type. She has been great with them, in fact at her appointment to test putting them in and out she managed it straight away. Unlike the man who had his appointment before us which over ran by 45 minutes as he really could not get them in and out sufficiently.

I would recommend discussing it with the optician, they do a trial and if she is ok to get them in and out three times then I can't see why she shouldn't get them.

DD has been so much more confident with them especially as she got them just before starting secondary school.

She now only wears her glasses at home in the evenings/weekends to watch tv etc

CorusKate Wed 05-Mar-14 09:42:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CoteDAzur Wed 05-Mar-14 12:06:11

What kind of lens do you use that needs to be manipulated back into position when it slips?

I have been using soft lenses every day and all day for 35 years and never had to do this.

2madboys Wed 05-Mar-14 12:12:15

No idea if they're suitable for children, but I wear extended wear lenses. I'm pretty short sighted and also have an astigmatism. I can keep them in for up to 30 days at a time (including sleeping) and then have one day of glasses to give my eyes a rest. The optician says he has far fewer problems with people using these, mainly, he thinks, because they don't get handled very much and therefore less problem with infections due to poor hygiene. They're really comfortable and as easy to put in/take out as my previous ones.

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