Contact lenses can be a great way to correct your vision without worrying about losing or breaking your glasses. However, they come with their own set of precautions that you should take, especially if you want to maintain your eye health. When you’re handling your contact lenses, you need to avoid:
Your hands carry a variety of germs that can spread easily by touching other items, including your contacts. While it may be tempting to fix your contact lenses if they get out of position, you run the risk of spreading bacteria to your lenses or your eye which could result in an infection. Wash your hands each time you remove, insert, or adjust your contact lenses to mitigate any contamination.
Right before you go to bed, you might find that you’re out of contact solution. Before you decide to reuse the solution you used the previous day, understand that bacteria can also be present in the container. That too can lead to pink eye and other eye infections. It’s important to have a regular supply of contact solution at hand. Saline solution can be used in a pinch, but only as a last resort. Contrary to popular belief, water and saliva are not suitable replacements.
As convenient as it is to just take a nap or sleep without removing your lenses, it could lead to complications. At the very least, your eyes could become dry from the lack of oxygen and moisture that’s created through blinking. Corneal abrasions and infections are also possible. It’s important to remove your contacts before resting to keep your eyes hydrated and bacteria-free.
Dr. Scott Sutherland, a CEENTA ophthalmologist at our Pineville and Steele Creek offices, has advice for those who tend to fall asleep with their lenses in. "Most contact lens complications occur as a result of sleeping in contact lenses. Daily disposable lenses are a great way to avoid this risk."
How you store your contacts is also important. Buying new contact solution is not enough as your container can also be a breeding ground for germs even if you remove the old liquid each day. To make the most of your storage, replace your storage case every three months.
Making the switch from glasses to contact lenses requires some additional care, but they can be a satisfying replacement. It’s also important to make sure you have the right prescription which can be accomplished with a thorough eye exam with a CEENTA ophthalmologist. Schedule your next appointment with Dr. Sutherland at our Pineville or Steele Creek offices today to get started on your path to contact lenses.
This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your doctor. New patients can make appointments online with our eye doctors in North and South Carolina. Current patients can also make appointments through myCEENTAchart with physicians they have already seen.
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