How to Love Your Lenses
Contact lenses are enjoyed safely and loved by millions of people.
Most wearers won’t ever experience problems, however, if contact lenses are not treated with the love and respect they need, there is a small risk of developing potentially serious problems.
If you love your eyes, love your lenses. Stick to the tips below to keep your eyes healthy:
- Have regular review appointments as advised by your eye care practitioner
- Always wash and dry your hands prior to handling your lenses
- Always rub, rinse and store your lenses in the recommended solution before and after each use (except single-use lenses, which should be discarded/recycled where possible after each wear)
- Always clean the lens case with solution, wipe with a clean tissue then air-dry after each use by placing the case and lids face down on a tissue
- Always apply the same lens first to avoid mixing them up
- Check the lens is not inside out before applying
- Check the lens is not damaged before applying
- Handle carefully to avoid damaging the lens
- Apply your lenses before putting on make-up
- Remove lenses then remove make-up
- Keep your eyes closed when using hairspray or other aerosols
- Replace your lens case at least monthly
- Discard lenses and solutions that are past their expiry date
- Wear only the lenses specified by your contact lens practitioner
- Stick strictly to the recommended wearing schedule and replacement frequency
- Make sure you have an adequate supply of replacement lenses or a spare pair
- Have an up-to-date pair of spectacles for when you need to remove your lenses
- If you feel uncomfortable, or your vision is blurred, or you experience eye redness you should remove your lenses immediately and consult your eye care practitioner.
- Use tap water, or any other water, on your lenses or lens case
- Sleep in your lenses unless specifically advised to by your practitioner
- Use your lenses for swimming, hot tubs or water sports, unless wearing tight fitting goggles
- Share contact lenses or wear any lenses not specified by your eye care practitioner
- Wet your lenses with saliva
- Put a lens on the eye if it falls on the floor or other surface, without cleaning and storing again
- Re-use or top up solution – discard and replace with fresh solution each time lenses are stored
- Decant solution into smaller containers
- Wear lenses left in the case for more than seven days without cleaning and storing them in fresh solution
- Wear any lens overnight if you are unwell
- Wear your lenses when showering
- Switch the solution you use, except on the advice of your practitioner
- Use any eye drops without advice from your eye care practitioner
- Apply a lens if it is dirty, dusty or damaged
- Continue to wear your lenses if your eyes don’t feel good, look good, or see well
Ask yourself these three questions, each time you wear your lenses:
Do my eyes feel good all day long with my lenses in? — no discomfort
Do my eyes look good? — no redness
Do I see well? — no unusual blurring with either eye
If the answer to any of these questions is no, leave your lenses off and consult your eye care practitioner immediately, who will advise you on what to do next.
Remember that if you have any questions about your contact lenses you should consult your eye care practitioner for advice.
Contact lenses are a medical device and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has produced a guide to buying contact lenses for personal use.