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How to care for your new contact lenses

How To Care For Your Contact Lenses

Contact lenses are worn every single day by millions of people, and while they are safe to wear, sometimes they do carry the risk of getting an infection.  This mainly occurs when the wearer does not take care of the contact lenses properly or the case that they put them in.  But, it can also happen when you place the contacts in the case or your eye, without washing your hands first!  Other factors include; extended wear of the contacts, reduced tears under the lenses and other environmental factors such as wind, sun and heat.

The best way to keep your eyes healthy is to follow the directions on the lenses care package or the directions your optometrist gives you.  In particular, you should make sure that you use the rub and rinse steps in the cleaning process for the contact lenses and make sure that you replace the lens when its time is up and due for renewal. Do not try and stretch out the longevity of your lenses as this can lead to infections.  All contacts have an expiration date, not regarding when they go bad, but concerning the overall integrity of the lens as well as the change of sight for your eyes. 

Taking Care Of Your Lenses

The following guidelines are ones that are set by the Australian Society of Ophthalmology, the Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists, the Cornea Society and the Australian Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery.  The “risk” of an infection varies and is characterized by the type and brand of the contact lenses.  For example, single-use contacts are one of the most used and safest types of contact lenses around, and they can help reduce an infection from happening.  When deciding on what types of contacts to get, your ophthalmologist can help you decide, but sometimes its less about what you want, and more about what is better for your eyes.

Regardless of the types of contacts and if you are buying them offline or you buy contact lenses online the same principles can be used.

Make sure that before you handle your contact lenses, that you always wash your hands with warm water and antibacterial soap.  Then, make sure that you dry them with a lint-free towel!

If at, all possible, minimize the use of water on the contact lenses.  This means removing them when you go swimming and taking them out before you go into a hot tub or a spa.  Its okay to wear them when you shower, just make sure you close your eyes, so you don’t get water in your eyes.

Always make sure that when you store your contacts that you do so in the proper eye solution.  Water should not be used – tap or sterile.

It shouldn’t need to be said, but apparently it does – never place your contacts in your mouth to re-wet them!

Make sure that you use your contacts for only as long as your doctor recommends.  If you are worried that you will run out, you can buy contact lenses online, and sometimes they can even be cheaper than the originals, but you do need a prior prescription to do this.

Clean your contact lenses before you put them in your eyes but after you take them out of the case, i.e., in the morning.  To clean them, simply put some solution in the palm of your head, placing the contact in the middle, and use your finger to rub the lens.  Flip it over, then do it again, and then put them in your eyes.

Eye infections happen for all sorts of reasons.  But, the main thing you need to be aware of is that eye infections can cause some pretty serious issues.  Make sure that if you have any tearing of the lenses, redness, increased light sensitivity, or discharge that you take the contacts out immediately and contact your doctor.