Our Advice for Contact Lens Users
Whether you’re using cosmetic lenses for an event like carnival or Halloween, or you’re looking to change your style and make the switch to contact lenses, here are a few tips on how to use and care for your soft contact lenses in order to avoid any complications to your eyesight.
1. Have your routine eye test done regularly
Anyone who uses contact lenses should have at least one eye exam a year (or as suggested by your eye care professional), to make sure everything’s on track and there are no developing complications.
2. Hygiene is key
Make sure you wash your hands properly using soap, and make sure that you have dried them properly before you handle your contact lenses. Spreading germs is the last thing you want!
3. Care for your lenses
There are two ways how you can use contacts — there are daily lenses which can only be used for a day and then thrown away, or bi-weekly/monthly lenses which have a longer lifespan but need to be cleaned on a daily basis.
Daily Lens wear
Since these lenses are to be worn for a single day’s use, a daily lens care regime is not needed. Just make sure that you practice good hygiene when putting the lenses in, and that you throw the used lenses away after a day’s use.
Monthly Lens wear
On a daily basis the contact lenses must be cleaned with a multipurpose solution that your eye care professional suggests.
The contact lens must be rubbed with the solution for at least 10 seconds and then rinsed with the same solution and placed into the clean contact lens case.
The solution, in this case, should be replaced on a daily basis. Never top off the old solution — make sure once used it is discarded from the contact lens case.
When wearing the contact lenses, clean the case with multipurpose solution and allow to air-dry face down on a clean tissue within a clean environment. The contact lenses and contact lens case must be replaced one month from opening (or 2 weeks if wearing a biweekly lens).
Remember that Saline is for rinsing your contact lenses not for cleaning and disinfecting.
4. General tips for lens care and use
· For those wearing make-up: make sure you wear your lenses before you apply your make up, to avoid contamination of lens.
· Never use tap water to rinse contact lenses.
· Do not sleep whilst wearing your contact lenses
· Avoid swimming whilst wearing contact lenses
· Always follow the recommended wearing schedule, and replace your lenses accordingly
· Never place the contact lenses in your mouth to rinse
· Never share your lenses with others
· Keep your nails short to avoid scratching your eyes
· If you drop your contact lens, clean it thoroughly with multipurpose solution before inserting again.
· Never reuse old solution
5. Three questions you should always ask yourself:
Do my eyes look good?
Do my eyes feel okay?
Do my eyes see well?
If they don’t, remove your lenses immediately and see your eye care professional.
How to insert a lens
If you are trying contact lenses for the first time, we recommend that you book an appointment with our optometrists so that an eye care assessment can be carried out to assess your suitability for lenses. We’ll also guide you on which lens best suits your lifestyle.
1. Wash and dry your hands
2. Place the contact lens on the tip of your index finger of your dominant hand, after you have ensured that your fingers are dry
3. Get close to the mirror and look straight into your eye. With the middle finger of the same hand holding the lens, pull the bottom of your eyelid down
4. Hold the upper eye lid firmly with the index finger of the other hand
5. Place the contact lens on the coloured part of your eye
6. Blink a few times.
If you find that your contact lens is folding over, it means you are not holding your eyelids firmly enough, and allowing yourself to blink before the contact lens has been inserted.
How to remove a contact lens
1. Wash and dry your hands
2. Get close to the mirror and look straight into your eye. With your middle finger pull the bottom of your eyelid down
3. Pull your lower eyelid down with your middle finger of your dominant hand
4. Hold the upper eye lid firmly with the index finger of your other hand
5. Use your index finger and thumb of your dominant hand to pinch the contact lens and pull away gently from your eye.
REMEMBER whenever handling contact lenses, it is essential to keep your hands clean at all times