Over 125 million people use contact lenses worldwide, and most of them expose themselves to increased risk of eye infections ranging from mild to severe by making simple mistakes when applying or handling contact lenses.
So, whether your contact lenses are corrective or decorative, here are 7 tips you should follow for healthy, infection-free eyes:
1- Cleanliness is Key:
Wash your hands thoroughly before applying or removing the lenses and dry with lint-free towels. Avoid perfumed soaps and lotions, particularly those containing lanolin as the particles might stick to your fingers and adhere to the lens, potentially causing infections.
2- Keep your Fingernails Short:
It is highly recommended for inexperienced users to trim their fingernails until they’re used to the process in order to avoid accidental scratching and damaging the eyes. Do not attempt to handle your lens with pens, tweezers or other sharp objects, and risk damaging the soft lens surface, risking an infection.
3- Only Use Prescribed Contact Lens Solution:
Normal saline is just sterile salt water-which does not clean or disinfect- and plain water contains various microbes, so refrain from washing your lens with them if you run out of contact lens solution. Fill the lens case only with the recommended solution and use hydrogen peroxide to clean the lenses after each use by rubbing them gently, even for ‘no-rub’ lenses.
4- Overnight Use is Not an Option:
Unless you have prescription corrective lenses, sleeping with the lenses causes loss of oxygen, making the eye surface vulnerable to infection. Also, closed eyelids means maximum contact of the cornea with the lens, transferring any germs from the lens onto the cornea. So take those lenses off before going to bed.
5- Know How to Handle Your Lenses When Applying Makeup:
Put on soft contact lenses before applying makeup and gas-permeable lenses after makeup application, while removing your lenses before taking off makeup. Opt for water-based cream eye shadow over powder as it is less likely to get into your eyes. Also, never apply eyeliner or mascara below the lash line as it can get on your lens and cause irritation.
6- Water is Not Your Friend:
Refrain from water sports and showering with your lenses on. As lakes, seawater, swimming pools and even tap water contains an infection-causing organism called acanthamoeba, wearing contact lenses while engaging in water-related activities can expose you to higher risk of acanthamoeba-caused infections.
7- Reserve Colored Lenses for Special Occasions:
In addition to reducing natural eye-vision by 20%, colored lenses promote de-oxygenation and ocular dryness due to the layer of pigmentation, which makes them less-permeable to air. Long-term use can therefore damage the cornea and result in hazy vision.
If you experience constant eye irritation during use or after removal of contact lenses, do not hesitate to Book an Appointment with a Top Eye Specialist in Rawalpindi, Karachi and Faisalabad through oladoc.com. Or call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 if you need any help to find the RIGHT Doctor for your Eye-sight related issues.