Tinted Contact Lenses for Migraines?

As tinted lenses for various types of migraine grow in popularity, there is increasing interest in contact lenses which can do the same thing as glasses.

Actually, using tinted contact lenses for migraine is not a new idea.  In 2005, a study in the USA showed relief from migraine pain in most patients that tried red tinted contacts.

Tinted Contact Lenses for Migraines?

It shouldn’t be surprising that tinted contact lenses work where specialized tinted lenses in glasses work.  Many migraine patients are finding relief from photophopia, and even pain, with quality sunglasses or precision tinted lenses.

When it comes to contact lenses for migraine, there are some special considerations:

  • Just buying regular tinted lenses won’t do.  Many have a clear, untinted pupil, which of course won’t give any benefit.  But you do need a tint that is more geared toward migraine relief.
  • Lens tinting for migraine relief is really still in its infancy.  That means that there will probably be a bit of trial and error before you find the tint that works for you.
  • There are some concerns about the safety of tinted lenses.  Be sure to go to a qualified professional.  Check out the laws in your country about who can and cannot provide this service.
  • Common tints for migraine are shades of red and brown.  Other colours, such as blue, may be tried.
  • The Irlen Method has helped some headache patients.  Irlen does provide contact lenses as well as glasses, after a specific testing process.  See what this patient had to say.

Check here for more on tinted contact lenses for migraine in the USA.  Included in the article are phone numbers that your doctor can call.

In London, England, The Institute of Optometry has done a lot of work with precision tinted lenses.

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  • Debra Apr 28, 2014

    I recently had a set of contacts made by my local optometrist based on the Eye Tech of Green article you linked. He had the San Diego company do the tinting for me and these contacts so far have nearly eliminated my light triggered migraines. I have chronic migraine and work in an office with open bulb fluorescents which constantly hurt my eyes and kept my head pain at high levels. I am only on day 4 of wearing these new contacts, but I have had 3 of those days nearly pain free which is not typical for me. I am very excited about finding these.

  • melody Apr 28, 2014

    This is amazing to me as just a few weeks ago I mentioned to some family members that I wondered if it might be possible to get contacts with some sort of tint that would help with photophobia. I hate going to the bank, the grocery store and church (especially if it is rainy and overcast) with my sunglasses on. I have. them tinted as dark as I can possibly get them!!! AWESOME!!! Will have to check into this. People look at you like you are nuts when it’s raining and you go in the store with your shades on!!