When cared for properly, contact lenses can provide a safe and effective way to correct your vision. However, when not used as directed, there can be serious consequences. Your habits, supplies, and eye care provider are all essential to keeping your eyes healthy. Therefore, if you’re thinking about getting contacts, make sure to follow these important contact lens safety tips:
Don’t sleep in your lenses. Most contacts are not designed for overnight wear. Sleeping while wearing contact lenses has been shown to cause up to 8 times greater risk of an eye infection. Therefore, the healthiest way to wear contacts is to remove and discard or clean them each night.
Always wash your hands with soap and water before handling your lenses. Dry your hands well with a clean cloth before touching your contact lenses every time.
Be sure to use the contact lens solutions that are recommended by your eyecare professional. Never use tap water in any area of your lens care, including rinsing as it contains micro-organisms which can lead to serious eye infections and loss of vision.
Don’t “top off” solution. Use only fresh contact lens disinfecting solution in your case—never mix fresh solution with old or used solution.
Clean your contact lens case by rubbing and rinsing it with contact lens solution—never water—and then empty and dry with a clean tissue. Store upside down with the caps off after each use and replace it at least once every three months.
Be wary of special effect contact lenses. These lenses are fun and safe as long as they are properly fitted and prescribed by an eye care practitioner. Never buy them at a beauty parlor, swap meet, or at any store or online without a prescription.
Remove your contact lenses immediately and call your eye care provider if you have eye pain, discomfort, redness, or blurred vision.
Be prepared by carrying a backup pair of glasses with a current prescription—just in case you have to take out your contact lenses.
Visit your eye care provider yearly or as often as he or she recommends.
If you have any questions about this article or any other eye care issues, you can always ask us on our Facebook page. We promise a prompt response and would be happy to help ensure the health and well-being of your vision