Mispropper use of contact lenses could lead to severe eye infections that can change or affect eyesight. A recent study published by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), seeks to educate Americans on the matter.
Around 41 million American citizens wear contact lenses as an alternative form of glasses.The report issued by the CDC ensures one out of five contact-lens users have suffered from eye infections or related complications for not following ground rules on their usage. The research first objective was the conscientization of contact lens users and the possible risks of wearing them.
Ten years of database allowed researchers to understand a lack of care caused most of the infections. Some of the consequences included scarred cornea, severe eye damage, corneal transplant and reduced vision.
“Contact lenses are a safe and effective form of correction, however, improper wear and care can cause eye infections that lead to long-term damage,” said Michael Beach who is the director of the CDC’s Healthy Water Program.
Putting sight at risk
The concept of contact lenses goes back to 1508 when the famous Italian, mathematician, and inventor Leonardo Da Vinci, showed the first sketches of a contact lens. However, the first contact lens was invented over 350 years ago.
Ever since the 70’s the concept of contact lenses has evolved, and the artifacts have become more user-friendly, allowing customers to put the eyepieces on and almost forget they are there, which is the main issue that leads to infections. Nicole Lyn Pesce, from the New York Daily News, reports her experience with contact lenses ensuring she had worn them for a long time, without complications.
However, without the proper care, the reporter found herself paying over $200 on antibiotics and eye drops plus suffering from compromised sight. Just like the reporter, many patients in the CDC’s research had to attend the emergency room after damage or complications on their sight. According to the study, some had to visit the doctor’s office in a daily matter until their eyes healed properly.
To avoid dangerous infections and losing eyesight, contact lens users must follow the basic rules advised by physicians. According to the CDC, most complications were a result of sleeping with the lenses or over-wearing them passed their due date.
Here are some of the guidance steps provided by the study:
- Schedule a yearly visit to the doctor to examine the evolution of your prescription and the eyesight’s health.
- Don’t share your lenses. Every eye has a different compound, and bacteria by sharing your contact lenses you could be exposing your eye to different infections.
- Keep the contact lens case clean. It’s not enough to put saline solution in the case a proper clean is advised to avoid different bacteria and dust falling in the cornea.
- Don’t wear lenses past their due date. Researchers explain there’s a reason why the lenses have an expiration date, and that’s to avoid complications.
- Last but not least, don’t sleep with the contact lenses on, most of the infections are caused by keeping the lens in the close eye.