Important Tips for Contact Lens Wearers
Whether you're new to contact lenses, or you've been wearing them for years, it's important to put the following tips into practice.
Putting in and Removing Your Contact Lenses
First, wash and dry your hands thoroughly.
Whatever is on your hands when you touch your contact lenses could end up in your eyes. That's why it's important to thoroughly wash your hands with antimicrobial soap. Then dry your hands thoroughly with a clean towel before handling your contact lenses.
Also, avoid using cream or oil-based soaps and lotions before touching your contacts, as these can contaminate your lenses or leave an oily film.
Always start with the same eye for contact lens insertion.
When inserting your contacts, start with the same eye every time. You'll be less likely to switch the lenses by mistake. That's especially important because your left and right contact lenses can have different prescriptions.
Place your contact lens in your palm.
Hold your contact lens by putting it in the palm of your hand. Pinching the lens between your fingers increases the chance you'll nick it with your fingernail. Fingernails can harm the surface of the lens, and are also a rich source of bacteria.
Remove Your Contacts if You Experience Pain or Discomfort
If your contact lenses start to hurt or feel uncomfortable, or if people comment on the redness of your eyes, remove your lenses. Then check them for cracks or scratches, and discard any damaged lenses.
If pain or discomfort happen repeatedly when wearing your contact lenses, give us a call to schedule an appointment. We can help diagnose the problem and make sure you have the right lenses for you. In the meantime, it may be best to wear your eyeglasses instead.
Stock up on contact lens solution
Unless you wear daily disposable contact lenses, it's a hassle to discover you're out of lens cleaning solution at the end of a long day. Having contact lens solution on hand is especially important because you should use fresh cleaning solution each time you touch and store your contact lenses. Never use tap water to clean your contacts. It can contain impurities and infectious microorganisms.
Keep Your Glasses With You
Having your glasses available, especially during vacations, will come in handy. For example, many contact lens wearers prefer their glasses first thing in the morning before they head out for the day. And if debris or another irritant makes your lenses uncomfortable during the day, you'll be glad you kept a pair of glasses with you.
Always Wear Sunglasses, Even With UV-protective Contacts
Even UV-protective contact lenses don't block all of the UV rays that harm your eyes. Wearing UV-protective sunglasses will help reduce the strain and harm to your eyes and vision. Be sure to tell us about the kinds of outdoor activities you do so we can help assess your exposure risk and recommend the right protection for you.
Only Buy Contact Lenses From Legitimate Sources–and With a Valid Prescription
Any contacts you buy need to be prescribed by a licensed optometrist or ophthalmologist–even lenses without vision correction, such as color contacts or decorative contacts worn for Halloween. In fact, in the U.S., you cannot buy contact lenses without a valid prescription. That's because contact lenses are considered medical devices. And only a licensed eye care professional can ensure your contacts are medically safe and properly fitted for you.
Remember, taking care of your contacts is essential to taking care of your vision and your eye health.
If you'd like to schedule an appointment to see if contact lenses are right for you, or if you have questions about your current contacts or are experiencing any wearing problems, please give us a call.
Nothing in this article is to be construed as medical advice, nor is it intended to replace the recommendations of a medical professional. For specific questions, please contact our office.
Adapted with permission from: Contact Lens Tips For You, CooperVision.com.
VISION & HEALTH NEWSLETTER COURTESY OF:
Christine Tyler, O.D., Cindy Pouw, O.D.