There are millions of people across the globe with weak eyesight that require glasses or contact lenses. The concept of using contact lenses rather than glasses that are hard to maintain the whole day on your face was first thought of by a German Glassblower. Although, many reports suggest that it was Adolf E. Fick and Edouard Kalt, who first came up with contact lenses. The very first contact lenses were made in the year 1888by both of these Opticians. Ever since then contact lenses became popular due to the effortless vision they provided as well as saved people from having embarrassing incidents such as broken glasses and the like.
- 1 What are contact lenses?
- 2 Types of contact lenses
- 3 How to take care of your contact lenses
- 4 Conclusion
What are contact lenses?
Contact lenses are thin curved glasses that are placed on the person’s eye with weak eyesight. Contact lenses are available in both clear as well as in colour views. While clear contact lenses are as effective as colour ones, people still prefer lenses with a hint of colour so they can be handled easily. Other than having varieties in colour, lenses are also available in both hard and soft depending upon the person’s choice.
Types of contact lenses
Although, contact lenses are worn by people who have trouble seeing because of weak eyesight. In recent decades, people have started using lenses for cosmetic and novelty purposes too.
While contact lenses are made for eyesight to help people see better, cosmetic lenses are generally used by people who want to change their eye colours. You might not know that your favourite movie star doesn’t actually have those big blue eyes and just uses cosmetic colour lenses.
However, despite being a cosmetic item, all lenses fall into the medical device category. Because of this, they require U.S. FDA approval. This is due to the reason that contact lenses are also responsible for common complications including infection and inflammation leading to weaker eyesight or vision loss, one or both.
The best ways to avoid having complications are following:
- Always consult with your doctor if you are considering using contact lenses.
- Always purchase contact lens from reliable sources. You can also purchase contact lenses online. However, verify that your source is FDA approved.
- Always take care of your contact lenses as well as clean them regularly.
- Always stick to your schedule related to wearing them and replacing them.
How to take care of your contact lenses
According to a survey reported in the year 2019, over 30% of people never learned how to properly wear contact lenses and take care of them. Although there is nothing for you to worry about since we are going to break down all the do’s and don’ts of taking care of contact lenses and cleaning them.
How to clean contact lenses correctly?
Let’s take a look at how to use your contact lens properly with all the do’s and don’ts.
Wash and dry your hands properly
There are a lot of germs and bacteria on our hands and fingers. So, if you would use your contact lenses without washing your hands first, it might increase the chances of getting eye infections. However, carefully washing your hands before wearing contact lenses will contaminate the bacteria from your hands hence stop them from transferring to your eyes. Also, remember to dry your hands too before you touch your lenses.
Always keep your lenses carry case clean
According to the American Optometric Association, a contact lens user should always clean their lens carry case after every single use with the help of a contact solution. This will stop the bacteria from building up after each use.
Clean and disinfect your contact lenses after every single-use
One of the most important things that you should always remember is to disinfect your lens after you have worn them for 2 straight weeks or monthly. You can disinfect your lens by using a fresh disinfecting solution.
This can be done by: placing the lens on your finger or palm and dropping a few drops of disinfecting on the lens. Once the lens is wet with the disinfecting solution, you can rub it off forth and back.
After doing this, you can again rinse your lenses in the solution and store them in the carry case.
Don’t use saliva or tap water on your lenses
You should never use your saliva or tap water. Other than using tap water, you should also avoid wearing your lenses in the shower. This is because water carries a microorganism known as acanthamoeba. According to the CDC, Acanthamoeba causes many eye infections issues. The same goes for the saliva too as it also contains more microorganisms than tap water.
Don’t leave your cleaning solution open
Other than using tap water or saliva, you should never leave your contact solution and disinfection solution open. According to the National Eye Institute, if the disinfection solution is left open it can also have contamination effects hence damaging the lenses.
If you are still confused about this then think if you use the same water to bathe that you used yesterday? You won’t. You would have fresh water or not bathe at all. The same goes for disinfection solution, you should always keep it fresh and contain it in the box or bottle it came in.
Do not store your lenses in the bathroom
This is one of the most common mistakes done by contact lens users. Bathrooms are breeding ground for bacteria as it has lots of moisture for them to increase and strive. Storing your contact lenses in the bathroom can put your contact lenses at great risk.
You can even imagine all the pathogens your bathroom has because of the toilet. Once you have imagined this, you will never store your lenses in the bathroom again.
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How to use contact lenses
Remove your lenses before entering the water
Other than not washing water to clean your lenses, you should also not wear your contact lens when you are about to enter the water. This also includes showering, swimming, and bathing. The chemicals and the bacteria that are in the water can easily be caught up in the lenses and cause inflammation and irritations in the eyes.
Discard or dispose of lenses that have come in the contact with water
Even if you were careful while not using contact lenses when entering the water. Somehow the lens still manages to come in contact with the water then discard and dispose of those lenses immediately without using them again. This precaution is used to ensure that if there are any microorganisms or bacteria trapped in the lenses, it might cause infections in the eyes.
Always be mindful when you are wearing lenses
One of the main reasons people like to wear contact lenses is comfort and not worrying about the lenses. However, like being careful with water, you should always be mindful if you are about to rub your eyes. Even if you are not wearing any glasses or contact lens, rubbing the eyes is still not a good idea. And, this is the worst if you are wearing contact lenses since there are chances that you might damage your eyes while wearing them.
We talked about how to use your contact lenses that they won’t have any side effects, let’s take a look at what are don’ts:
Do not wear lens while sleeping
Unless your eye doctor has directly advised you to wear your lenses while sleeping, it is recommended by everyone to remove lenses before going to sleep. This is because, during the day, your lenses can catch particles of dirt, bacteria, and pollutants. And, wearing them at night can have ill effects on your eyes.
Don’t wear lenses if you are feeling ill
Another don’t on the list is not wearing lenses when you are under the weather. Whether you are feeling cold, fever, or flu it is recommended to not wear lenses. This is because wearing lenses during these times can lead to pink eyes.
Don’t expose them to heat
Exposing your lenses to extreme heat can have such side effects on your lenses. It might also damage them. One interesting fact about contact lenses is that according to a study, contact lenses cannot melt in your eyes due to excessive heat. However, they might get damaged hence forcing you to change them before the schedule.
How to dispose of contact lenses
Follow your replacement schedule
Whenever your doctor will suggest you go for contact lenses, they will also suggest a schedule that you will need to follow for your contact lenses replacement. This is to avoid getting infections because of the old lenses. Once you have replaced your lens with new ones, you can dispose of your old contact lenses.
Replace your lens carry case every 3 months
Carry cases for lenses are important as they provide a secure place for your lenses to store whenever you are not using them. To stop bacteria from building up, you should always replace your carry case at least once every 3 months.
Find a location to buy lenses
You should consider buying your lenses from the same place every time. This way you won’t have to worry about the lens replacement. Consider buying your contact lens online.
Avoid flushing them
All of the contact lenses are disposable contact lenses. However, there is always a right way to dispose of your contact lenses rather than flushing them down the toilet or in the sink. You should not dispose of your lens in a sink.
Avoid mixing with garbage
Not disposing of your contact lens so that they won’t be stuck in the water system is not the end point here. You should also not mix your trash and lenses to avoid dumping them in landfills.
How to dispose of your contact lenses
Since they are small in size, a non-specialized recycle centre cannot handle your lenses properly. There are special recycling centres for contact lenses where you can take them.
Contact lenses are a blessing for people who don’t want to use glass and struggle with it daily. However, taking care of them is still a hefty task. We hope that this blog on how we can keep our contact lenses clean – What are the Do’s and Don’ts helped you. If you have any questions feel free to ask.