Contact lenses are a comfortable and convenient alternative to glasses, and are suitable for almost everyone! Contact lenses are not much more "high maintenance" than glasses, but it always pays to practice good contact lens habits. Whether you are just starting out, or if you've been wearing contact lenses for a while, here are six common mistakes that you can avoid, to ensure the most comfort in your contact lens routine.
1. Sleeping With Contact Lenses
During the day, our eyes are open and constantly blinking, keeping your eye oxygenated and your contact lens moistened. During the night, however, your corneas get less oxygen and moisture, and wearing your contact lenses as you sleep will only exacerbate this condition.
It also increases the risk of infection by six to eight times. Even if you are prescribed contact lenses that can be worn while sleeping, it's still advisable that you take them off when you sleep, to give your eyes a much-needed break.
2. Forgetting to Wash Your Hands
This seems self-explanatory, but it is often overlooked, and one of the first mistakes that people make. We might even get away with it, as our immune systems successfully protect us from infection.
However, the truth of the matter is that our hands come into contact with so many different types of germs and bacteria throughout the day, even if we do not leave the house. Using a disinfecting soap and a towel to dry your hands properly will help you avoid getting any harmful bacteria onto your contact lenses and eyes by accident.
3. Wearing Lenses in the Shower
Water sources are rife with microorganisms — even normal exposure risks infection. Our natural defence is our tears, which have antimicrobial properties. However, contact lenses can hinder that cleansing process.
Contact lenses can also stick to your eye when exposed to water, causing scratches on your cornea which might allow those microbes to enter. Infections that take hold in the eyes can be more difficult to treat, and if left untreated, can lead to vision loss and pain.
4. Rinsing Lenses With Tap Water
The presence of bacteria and other micro-organisms in water is also why you must not wash your contact lenses with water. While they might "look" or "feel" clean, if these bacteria hitch a ride on your contact lenses into your eyes, they can multiply rapidly, causing serious infection.
Contact lens solution is specially designed to combat this. It contains ingredients to disinfect, preserve, and properly clean the lenses — removing microscopic buildup and sediments, without scratching the lens itself! Its special formula also helps the lenses stay moisturised and soft, for your comfort all day long.
5. Reusing Contact Lens Solution
The special formula of contact lens solution is also why you should never re-use or "top up" the solution you have in your contact lens cases! Adding clean water to a cup of dishwater wouldn't mean that you could drink it, right? The same goes for your contact lens solution. The old solution might have debris, dead microbes, or even living ones that have multiplied in the solution. Always use fresh solution to make sure that everything is as sterile and clean as can be.
6. Using Lenses Longer Than Prescribed
We might feel like contact lenses are reusable as often as we want. However, imperfections and changes on a microscopic level can affect the safety of the lenses. If they get too scratched or dirty, they can cause corneal abrasions and invite infection. It's a common mistake, but one that can cost you, so always switch out your contact lenses as prescribed, be it on a daily or monthly basis.
Now that you know all these tips, it's time for you to get your own contact lenses from Clearlab Singapore! Browse our online shop for disposable daily, monthly, and other types of contact lenses to suit your lifestyle needs. Whether you're new to lenses or need an updated prescription, we've got you covered. Come to our CentrePoint outlet for a free eye exam, where our consultants can help you find the best contact lenses for you!