Dos and don’ts of contact lens usage

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When worn, cleaned, and cared for properly, contact lenses are a safe and convenient way to correct vision. However, if lenses are used carelessly, you run the risk of getting an eye infection or potentially causing damage to the eye. In other words, contact lenses are the ideal substitutes for glasses if worn carefully and hygienically. Otherwise, dangerous infections that could impair vision, such as bacterial or viral corneal ulcers or Acanthamoeba Keratitis, could develop.

As a result, wearing contact lenses can be postponed if a youngster or teen is not yet mature enough to handle them appropriately. Contact lenses come in several varieties depending on their duration or validity, according to Dr. Priyanka Singh (MBBS, MS, DNB, FAICO), Director and Consultant Ophthalmologist at Neytra Eye Centre in New Delhi. It includes daily, monthly, quarterly, and annual varieties. In comparison to yearly contact lenses, daily lenses are more expensive but have a lower danger of infection. The most often used contact lenses are monthly and three-monthly lenses.

The total time spent wearing contact lenses each day shouldn’t exceed 6 to 8 hours, and they shouldn’t be worn when showering or while sleeping, she continued, even if they appear to be in good condition. She recommended:

1. Never sleep with your CL on and always take it off before bed.

2. Consistently wash your hands with soap and water before placing your CL. Apply one CL at a time after being tapped dry with a lint-free cloth (to avoid mixing up the right and left sides)

3. To reduce the spread of infection through your hands or water while removing the CL once more, wash your hands beforehand.

4. After taking off the lenses, rinse CL with the lens solution and add fresh solution to the lens case.

5. Even if the lenses are not being used, always replace the solution each day.

Never substitute any other solution for your lens solution, Dr. Priyanka sternly instructed. Purchase a high-quality solution, and before using it, verify the seal and expiration date. Avoid washing your eyes with water if you have eye discomfort; instead, use eyedrops that your ophthalmologist has suggested. Remove the lenses if inflammation continues, then visit your eye doctor. Additionally, if you have an eye illness, stop wearing contact lenses for a while and throw away the CL because it can be contaminated.

She suggested the following for those who adore makeup:

1. Before applying makeup, put on contact lenses (CL).

2. Take off CL before taking off makeup.

3. Avoid using eyeliners or glitter inside the inner corner of the eyes.

Dr. Pallavi Joshi, Consultant in Cornea, Ocular Surface, and Refractive Surgery at Bangalore’s Sankara Eye Hospital, offered the following tips for using and caring for contact lenses:

1. Wash your hands before handling your contact lenses or your eyes. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, then dry them with a fresh towel after washing.

2. Disinfect your lenses after removing them from your eyes using only the solutions that your ophthalmologist has prescribed.

3. Take off your contact lenses before going to bed, swimming, or taking a shower.

4. Replace your contact lens case at least every three months or as directed by your doctor. Clean it with warm water once a week.

5. Bring some glasses in case you need to take off your contact lenses. Additionally, always have your lens case with you everywhere you go.

6. Be sure to regularly replace the lens solution and wash the lens case with clean water.

Regarding the dos and don’ts of contact lens use and maintenance, she suggested:

1. Don’t wear your lenses too often. As often as your doctor advises, change them.

2. When wearing contact lenses, refrain from rubbing your eyes.

3. When wearing contact lenses, avoid letting makeup get in your eyes.

4. Don’t lend out your contacts to anyone.

5. If your eyes are itchy or look red, avoid wearing contact lenses. Before putting them back in your eyes, give them a chance to relax. Consult your ophthalmologist as soon as possible if the redness in your eyes and blurry vision persist.

6. Go to your annual eye test. Even if you think your eyes appear OK, it’s still highly important to have regular eye exams, especially if you wear contacts frequently.

For the best contact lenses for your eyes and the correct refractive power of your eyes, always see your doctor.