For many of you, contact lenses are a convenient alternative to clunky eyeglasses. Excellent for outdoor activities, they give you a better peripheral vision and do not fog up like your eyeglasses. However, if you don’t follow instructions around wearing them properly and cleaning them regularly, you run the risk of getting an eye infection.
One of the most common infections caused by wearing contacts is Keratitis. It is an infection of the cornea, which develops when contact lenses are not properly handled. Here, we will discuss a few facts about contact-lens related eye infections that will help you prevent complications.
1.About contact lens infection: Those who wear contact lenses are at higher risk of developing keratitis. If left untreated for long, keratitis can cause serious eye complications. When diagnosed early, it can be easily treated. When you wear contact lenses, the chances of developing conjunctivitis are also high.
2.Causes: There are several things that can cause a contact lens-related infection. However, mostly an eye infection develops when you do the following things:
- Using extended-wear lenses
- Sleeping with contact lenses
- Not handling contact lenses with clean hands
- Using expired lenses
- Viral infection of the eye caused by the herpes simplex virus
- Infection caused by bacteria, fungi, or parasites
3.Symptoms: If you develop any of the following symptoms of eye infection then you should stop wearing contact lenses immediately and consult an eye specialist.
- Watery eyes
- Blurry vision
- Light sensitivity
- Stinging sensation as if something’s in your eye
- Eye pain
4.Prevention: By practising healthy contact lens habits, you can reduce the risk of eye infection. Some of the healthy habits are:
- Follow the manufacturer’s and eye doctor’s instructions on how to clean and store your contact lenses.
- Always wash your hands with soap when handling contact lenses.
- Use the recommended solution for cleaning your contact lens.
- You should not wear expired lenses.
- Avoid wearing lenses while sleeping. In case, you forget to take them off, then do not wear them for the next 24 hours. This will give your eyes time to moisten on their own.
- Clean your lens storage case in warm soapy water.
- If you drop a lens, make sure to clean and rinse before reapplying.
- Do not use the old cleaning solution the next day. Always use a fresh solution.
- Use protective eye gear when swimming with contact lenses.
- Replace your contact lens case with a new one from time to time.
- Give your eyes a break from your contact lenses.
5. What to do if you have an infection: If you are experiencing redness, swelling, and pain in the eye, you should remove your contact lenses and set up an appointment at an eye hospital.
6.Treatment: The treatment depends upon the severity of the infection. Usually, eye infections are treated with eye drops. If your eye doctor suspects that there is some other complication, he or she may suggest you to undergo a comprehensive eye examination. You will have to stop wearing your contact lenses until the infection is fully treated.
7.Why you should not ignore eye infection: An eye infection may seem like a minor problem. But at times, it can be a sign of an underlying cause of a serious eye complication like a corneal ulcer. It’s best to let an ophthalmologist check your eyes.
8. What to do when you are having frequent eye infections: If you have frequent eye infections, then instead of just taking OTC eye drops you should consult an eye doctor. The contact lenses that you are using may not be the best option for you. An eye doctor can help you with that.
We offer treatment for different types of eye infections, conditions, and diseases.
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