According to a recent study appearing in the journal Optometry and Vision Science, only 2 percent of contact lens users are compliant in contact lens hygiene, while more than 80 percent of contact users believe they are compliant.
Poor Care of Contact Lenses
There are actually quite a few guidelines for proper contact lens use and care. Some of the most common ways people deviate from these guidelines include:
- Not removing your contact lenses before going to bed.
- Wearing your contact lenses while you are swimming.
- Showering while wearing your contact lenses.
- Using your contact lenses longer than you should before switching to a new pair.
- Failing to use fresh cleaning solution every day.
In some cases, failing to care for contact lenses properly can lead to serious ocular consequences. Improper care can cause harmful debris, bacteria and other things to come into contact with your eye.
Consequences of Improper Contact Lens Care
In the study, 72 percent of contact lens wearers reported they had experienced discomfort while wearing their lenses. Forty-seven percent said they had gotten an infection from their contact lenses.
Improper contact lens hygiene can cause a number of eye infections, including pink eye and E. coli infections. The most serious cases of eye infection can lead to blindness or even damage the eye itself.
Proper care and hygiene for contact lenses includes:
- Always wash your hands before handling your contact lenses.
- Throw away old lenses and switch to a new pair as instructed.
- Use your lens solution to rinse your contact lenses, not water.
- Do not store your lenses in water only.
- Replace the case you keep your contacts in every three months.
- Follow cleaning and storing directions for your contact lenses.
You should also discuss additional care instructions with your eye doctor. Your eye doctor can provide you with detailed instructions regarding how to care for your specific contact lenses.
For more information about contact lenses and contact lens alternatives, please find an experienced eye doctor in your area.