Contact Lenses Use – Comprehensive Ophthalmic Dos and Don’ts for Contact Lenses December 3, 2018 | By Nagesh Vuppala | Tags: contact, contact lens solution, contact lenses, eye infection, ophthalmologist, pink eye
Millions of people around the world wear contact lenses to enjoy a clear field of vision, improve their cosmetic appearance or for therapeutic purposes.
Contact Lenses Use
A contact lens is a thin clear lens that is placed on the cornea of the eye to improve vision. Like regular glasses, contact lenses are designed to provide clear vision. They are light and almost invisible. Some contact lenses are deliberately colored to change the appearance of the eye.
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Although contact lenses are safe, they require proper care and cleaning. Here are some contact lens dos and don’ts:
Keep your hands clean: It is always best to clean your hands before touching contact lenses. This is because; our hands and fingers are covered in germs. Therefore, it is recommended to wash contact lenses with soap and water before removing or inserting them. Always use clear soap without lotion to clean your hands. Use a clean, lint-free towel to dry your hands.
Clean contact lenses and cases properly: Always clean contact lenses and cases only with the recommended contact lens solution. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use. Never wash contact lenses with tap water, as it is not sterile and may contain harmful microorganisms that can cause severe eye infections. Do not put the contacts in your mouth or use saliva. Clean and dry the contact lens case daily and fill it with contact lens solution.
Get your eyes checked: It’s best to get your eyes checked regularly. If your contact lenses are too tight or too loose, you can face many problems. A regular eye exam can help diagnose any infection or eye complication. An optometrist can also determine any contact lens changes that need to be made for better vision. Eye complications related to contact lenses are easily diagnosed during such examinations. Consult the best optometrist from an accredited eye hospital.
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Change your contact lenses: Change your contact lenses on time. Disposable contact lenses should be disposed of according to your doctor’s advice. Some contacts are scheduled to be deleted monthly, biweekly, or daily. If gas permeable contacts are used, they should generally be discarded and replaced once a year. Wearing contact lenses longer than recommended causes discomfort, unhealthy eyes and increases the chance of eye infection.
Trim your nails: Long nails can accidentally scratch your contact lenses when you pick them up, put them in, or take them out. To avoid scratches and contact damage when working with them. It is better to shorten the nails.
Make-up: If you wear make-up or apply make-up, remember “Contact lenses first” Insert lenses first, then apply make-up: remove lenses first, then make-up.
Do not bathe with contact lenses: Avoid bathing or swimming in contact lenses. Remember to remove contact stickers before showering or taking a hot bath. Water contains microorganisms that can cause a serious eye infection, so it is better not to wash with contact lenses still in your eyes.
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Do not sleep in contact lenses: Sleeping in contact lenses increases the risk of eye infection. Therefore, it is generally not recommended to take a nap while wearing contact lenses. However, check with your optometrist as some contact lenses are approved to be worn at night. With such contacts, regular eye exams are a must.
Don’t ignore the warning signs of an eye infection: Your eyes may need medical attention if you experience redness, pain, blurred vision, or sensitivity to light. If these signs and symptoms persist for more than 24 hours, make an appointment with an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. If you experience severe symptoms, see an ophthalmologist immediately, regardless of duration. If contact lens problems are treated promptly, they do not cause permanent eye problems or vision loss.
Do not share your contact lenses: Never share your contact lenses with friends or family members. Sharing contacts can cause pink eye or an eye infection.
Most eye problems associated with contact lenses are minor, such as eye irritation. Sometimes serious eye complications can occur which can be very painful. In rare cases, eye complications can lead to permanent vision loss. Therefore, it is important to follow the appropriate instructions when using contact lenses.
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Your optometrist can give you instructions on how to use, wear, remove and care for your contacts. For a healthy contact lens wearer, you must follow your doctor’s instructions and instructions.
Nagesh Vuppala completed his Masters in Optometry from Bharati Vidyapeeth School of Optometry, Pune. He specializes in the treatment of low vision and keratoconus. Leads training programs and guides optometry students in low vision and contact lens research. He is an invited visiting professor at various academic conferences in India and abroad. He served as Senior Professor at School of Optometry, Bharati Vidyapeeth University Medical College, Pune and also as Senior Optometrist at LV Prasad Eye Institute before joining in 2010. He was associated with Johnson & Johnson Vision in India as Key Opinion Leader (KOL). . He has presented his research papers at various recognized international conferences in Las Vegas (USA), Brisbane (Australia), Shanghai, Sydney (Australia) and Singapore and also at many conferences in India. In 2005 he received the FIACLE award from the prestigious International Association of Contact Lens Educators IACLE from Australia. He is privileged to be invited as a Visiting Fellow at the University of New South Wales, UNSW in Australia. For items that basically look like thin sheets of plastic, there’s a surprising amount of chemistry behind contact lenses. This chemistry is designed to increase wearing comfort and is therefore constantly evolving and improving. Today’s post looks at some of the chemicals they’ve been made of over the years, as well as what’s in contact lens cleaning solution.
Contact lenses have been around since the late 19th century, albeit in a much more uncomfortable way. Originally made of glass twisted from the eyes of rabbits or corpses, they could only be worn for a short time, a few hours at most. These glass lenses were later slightly thinner, but were not suitable for comfort and as such never became very popular.
All this changed with the advent of plastic in the 1930s and 1940s. The polymers, long molecules made up of many identical smaller units called monomers, were flexible and could be made into a much thinner lens that sits on the surface of the eye. The first polymer used as a direct contact lens was poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), which had many advantages over glass. It had better visibility and of course was lighter and more comfortable. However, these hard lenses still had problems; they did not let in oxygen, which can have harmful effects on the eye, although they did not know this at the time. More importantly, they were still quite uncomfortable.
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The real breakthrough that led to contact lenses, which most of us wear today, happened in the 1950s. Czech scientists used a different polymer, poly(hydroxyethyl methacrylate), to create soft, flexible hydrogel lenses that had the added benefit of oxygen permeability. These lenses were more comfortable and could be worn for longer periods of time.
Hydrogel lenses contain networks of cross-linked polymers that are hydrophilic (water-loving) but also insoluble. They attract and absorb water; this is due to the presence of highly electronegative atoms such as oxygen in the polymer, which can form hydrogen bonds with water. By definition, a hydrogel must contain at least 10% water by weight, but many can contain much more – some up to a thousand times the original dry weight. You can see this hydrogel in action when you remove the contact lenses. When removed from moisture, the lenses gradually shrink and become hard and brittle as the water evaporates. But if you put them back in water, they swell up and become flexible again.
Although these soft lenses did a much better job of releasing oxygen, there was still plenty of room for improvement. Initially, this was achieved by adding other polymers, copolymers, to the hydrogel mixture to change the permeability of the lens. However, despite these advances, it was still difficult to create a lens that could be worn for long periods of time without depriving the eye of oxygen. Thinning the lenses helped, but there was a limit to both that and the oxygen permeability of the polymers used. Later, different types of polymers were needed to further increase the oxygen permeability of the lenses.
Enter polysiloxanes or silicones. They are silicon- and oxygen-containing polymers, the application of which is wide and varied. They are also even more permeable to oxygen than water, so the oxygen permeability of hydrogel lenses could be further increased. It allows for an opportunity
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