The question of how often a prosthetic eye needs to be replaced is one of the most overlooked in the older artificial eye wearing generation. Why do I say this you ask! Out of all my clients I see, the older generation quite often wears an artificial eye on average for more than 20 years before replacing it. Their number one reason is that “it has not been bothering me too much”. If you think of a prosthetic eye like an old shoe, it may be comfy and familiar but it isn’t always acting in your best interests. Eye socket health is a really important thing to remember. Over time your socket does change which means your prosthesis may not fit like it used to.
Maintain your artificial eye regularly.
Although having your eye polished every four to six months is really important and helps to promote a healthy socket, this doesn’t help with the fit of the prosthesis. You may begin to notice that you are having some discharge or your socket feels dry. Perhaps your eyelid is a bit droopy or the prosthesis has begun to spin easy. These are all signs of wear and some alarm bells should start going off that you may well need to consult your favourite Ocularist to get a prosthetic eye replaced and a new artificial eye made.
On average in adults you will need a new artificial eye every three to five years.
With young children it is a wee bit different. A new born could potentially need a new expander or conformer every four to six weeks depending on their condition and growth rate. This slows down as they get older and is dependant on how early you want to intervene. I personally feel from my own experiences with my daughter that the earlier the better when it comes to intervention with kids.
Key things to remember.
Get your artificial eye polished every four to six months to promote a healthy socket and motility of the prosthesis.
Look at replacing your artificial eye every three to five years depending on how things are tracking with the comfort and health of your socket.