Contact lens wearers risking eye infections: Study

29 August 2015

Even though contact lenses were designed to help people with their vision, it seemed that they were still doing it wrong, a recent Centers for Disease Control (CDC) poll showed.

A ridiculously whopping 99 per cent of those who took part in the poll were found to have been involved in activities that could raise their chances of a serious eye infection.

Eighty two per cent of those polled used their lens case longer than they should, while 55 per cent topped off their solution rather than getting a fresh batch and 50 per cent wore their lenses even as they went to bed. These increased the chances of an eye infection.

Almost all contact lens wearers reported some risky eye care activity that could possibly lead to eye infections, the recently released study found.

Further research by the Centers for Disease Control, and health groups such as the American Optometric Association found that 99 per cent of the almost of the 41 million estimated contact lens wearers in the US were not following correct instructions on how to wear, clean, disinfect and store their contact lenses.

Additionally, nearly a third reported visiting the doctor due to red or painful eyes related to wearing contact lenses.

According to health experts from the American Optometric Association, it was important to remove, clean, disinfect and afterwards properly store one's contact lenses after use.

Dr Steve Compton, a Franklin optometrist, many of these infections stemmed from exposure of the lenses to water, reported.

It was important for people to know that the lenses should be cleaned in solution and not in tap water. Also, their use should be avoided while showering or swimming.

''Exposure of lenses to water raises the risk for infection because microorganisms living in water can be transferred to the eye. Although tap water is treated and safe for drinking, it is not sterile and contains microorganisms that can contaminate lens cases and contact lenses, which can cause eye infections,'' he explained.

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