The UK and indeed all countries around the world are suffering supply issues with gas permeable solutions.
What is causing the issues with contact lens solution supply?
One of the main world manufacturers of contact lens solutions, Bausch & Lomb had a compliance issue at their bottling plants over 6 months ago and they chose to cease production of all their contact solutions. This led to a major drop in availability, in particular with gas permeable solutions.
What solutions are affected?
All Bausch & Lomb solutions including; Boston Advance, Simplus, Biotrue and Renu. However the knock on effect is that most gas permeable solution supplies from all manufacturers is now seriously low.
Competitor brands affected include; Menicare, TotalCare and Delta.
What can I do if I'm running out?
First of all, speak to your optician, they may already have supplies of an alternative solution.
If you need to disinfect your lenses and cannot find gas permeable solutions then pretty much all soft lens solutions will disinfect a gas permeable contact lens however, read the instructions carefully.
What happens if I use a soft lens solution instead?
There are a few problems with this. Soft lens solutions will clean the bacteria and disinfect but they have two missing components that help gas permeable wearers;
1. soft lens solutions do not contain an abrasive component so you will develop protein build up over time on your lenses.
2. they do not have a cushioning affect when putting lenses in your eye (they are not as thick and gloopy) so extra care should be taken when inserting your lenses.
No doubt supplies will return to normal soon but please don't panic. Your eyecare provider will be able to advise you an alternative as a stop gap.