How To: Clean Your Contact Lenses
The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic is only one reason why contact wearers should always remember to properly clean and disinfect their contact lenses. Keeping your contacts clean is vital to prevent bacterias and reduce the chance of other harmful substances such as the coronavirus from entering your system. Dirty contact lenses can also cause various sight problems, such as blurry vision. Because wearing contacts requires direct contact between your hands and eyes, it is essential to maintain good hand hygiene, as well. Read on to learn about the proper way to clean your contacts.
Importance of maintaining good hand hygiene
Harmful substances such as the coronavirus enter the system through the eyes, nose, and mouth. Inserting contact lenses requires that your hands come into close proximity with your eyes, and that’s why you should always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before touching your eyes or your contact lenses. Dry your hands with a lint-free towel before touching your lenses.
Cleaning contact lenses with a hydrogen peroxide contact lens solution
Some prefer to use a hydrogen peroxide contact lens solution to clean their contacts. An upside to hydrogen peroxide contact lens solutions is that they offer complete disinfecting of lenses which can help fight off bacterias and the coronavirus. However, this type of contact lens cleaner often requires that you rinse your lenses with a multipurpose solution before using. After you’ve rinsed the lenses with the multipurpose solution, insert the contact lenses into the provided cylinder case and then fill the case with the hydrogen peroxide solution. The lens solution will bubble and fizz, a sign the disinfection process is taking place. Wait the directed time before removing lenses from the solution and re-wearing (typically around 6 hours).
Do’s and Don’ts when cleaning your contact lenses
DON’T re-use old solutions
You should never re-use your contact lens cleaner for more than one session. The wet environment is the perfect place for bacteria to grow and multiply which can cause eye infections. Instead, replace the used lens solution each time you go to clean your lenses.
DON’T use contacts for longer than the recommended use
Whether you wear daily, weekly, or monthly lenses, you should never wear the same lenses for longer than the recommended use. This can cause serious eye infections and poor vision. Instead, replace the lenses when recommended.
DON’T expose soft contact lenses to water
Most waters are not germ free and your contact lenses could serve as a catalyst between your immune system and the bacteria in the water. Water can also distort the lens shape and cause the lens to stick to your eyes. Take out your lenses before showering or swimming to avoid infections and ensure optimal vision.
DO replace the lens container every three months
It does no good to keep your lenses clean if you then put them in a dirty lens container. Keeping a clean contact lens case is a good practice to get in the habit of to avoid eye infections.
DO clean contact lens case every two weeks
You should wash your lens container with a gentle soap and water and rinse to keep your case clear of bacteria.
DO dry out your lens case
When you clean your contact lens case or your lenses, always be sure to properly dry out the container before reusing. Wet places are a great place for bacteria to grow and multiply.