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Contact lens care tips

Posted on 29 December 2014

CONTACT LENS CARE 

Contact lens care and maintenance is critical in maintaining ocular comfort and optimal vision during contact lens wear. Poor hygiene care of your contacts will increase the risk of eye infections. Studies have shown that most corneal infections associated with contact lens wear are due to patient non-compliance; for instance, infectious microorganism in the lens case due to poor care of the case. Here are some tips to start you off with a care and maintenance regime. 

1. Hand hygiene. Avoid using hand wash/soap that contains lanolin or other moisturisers. An antiseptic skin washer is highly recommended. Ensure hands are dry before handling lenses or solution.

2. Replace the contact lens case regularly, at least once a month. Bacterial biofilm can build-up on the case over time, which increases the risk of ocular infection.

3. Never top up the solution in your lens case. Topping up refers to refilling the contact lens solution in your lens case, rather than replacing it all with new solution. Although topping up is easier and more budget friendly, reuse of disinfectant solution significantly increases the likelihood of CL case contamination. 

4. Avoid over-wearing your contacts. A common mistake that people make is sleeping in contact lenses when they are not approved for overnight wear. This increases the risk of ocular infection.

6. Clean the contact lens appropriately. The correct disinfection technique is to do rub and rinse. Rubbing is the most effective method of reducing the microbial load on the lens surface.

  •  Rub the lens. Place the lens in the centre of your palm with lens cleaner solution (or a multipurpose solution) and gently rub both sides of the lens.
  •  Rinse well with multipurpose solution. Never rinse under tap water.
  •  Store the lens in either your approved peroxide based lens solution or your multipurpose solution.

7. Saline solution is not a disinfectant. Unpreserved saline in multi-use bottles is highly discouraged. Saline is for rinsing only. 

8. Contact lens solution is not a rewetting drop.

9. Regular replacement of contact lens solutions, at least once a month.  A handy tip is to write "date opened" on the bottle. Case contamination is associated with an increased risk of microbial keratitis. 

10. Proper storage of contact lens solutions and case. These products are commonly stored in the bathroom where it is convenient to the patient. However, it is best kept away from moisture, heat and toilets. Ensure the cap is always sealed.  During the day when not in use, leave the lens case inverted on a clean tissue with the cap off.  

The 4 Golden Rules:

  •  Look good.
Your eyes should always look good, no persistent redness.

  • Feel good
Your eyes should always feel good, no persistent pain or irritation.

  • See good
You should always be able to see clearly through the lenses. 

  • If in doubt, take them out
Follow these tips for an improved contact lens wearing experience!