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Helpful Tips for Wearing Contact Lenses

For many people, contact lenses are a great addition to glasses, and can provide huge benefits. Not only are contact lenses aesthetically pleasing cosmetically, but they also compliment people with active lifestyles. However, even through contacts have their advantages, there are definite guidelines that a person should follow to maintain eye health and vision. When wearing contact lenses Calgary eye care professionals recommend these tips to help preserve vision and eye health.

When Wearing Contact Lenses Calgary Patients Should Have A Proper Lens Fitting From A Qualified Eye Care Professional

Contact lenses are a medical device.  Because they have the ability to alter the health of your eyes, when getting contact lenses Calgary patients should be fit by qualified a eye care professional. Make sure that the person fitting your lenses is either an optometrist or licensed contact lens optician. At the time of your fitting appointment, your eye care professional will not only check your vision but also how the lenses sit interact with your eyes. They will look through a special instrument, called a slit lamp (microscope used for examining the eye) to see how the lens covers your cornea (clear dome shaped structure over the pupil). They will also check to see how the lens moves on your eyes as well. The movement of the lens is important because it allows for tear exchange under the contact lens. Tears bring oxygen to your cornea, which is needed to maintain healthy eyes. Even after finding a lens that works and fits well, your optometrist or contact lens opticians will want to see you back for a follow up examination. At this appointment they will make sure that you are still happy with your contacts and that the lenses are still an optimal fit. Failure in having a properly fit contact lens can result in some serious eye problems and in the most serious cases vision loss and eye health damage.

Practice Proper Contact Lens Hygiene

Hygiene is key! When handling your contact lenses it is very important to make sure your have clean hands. Before touching your lenses, thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water. Dry your hands on paper towel or a cloth (lint free) making sure there is no residual traces of water. Have a clean sterile case handy with fresh contact lens solution. This is just incase you need a place to set your contacts while you are handling them.  Try to keep the lenses from coming into contact with anything other then your eyes, clean fingers, or your sterile case. If you drop your lens while handling it, make sure it is thoroughly cleaned with solution before you try and insert it again. Most optometrists will recommend a specific contact lens cleaning solution for you to use with your contact lenses. Failure to comply with proper hygiene can result in some nasty eye infections. If you ever feel that you may have, or be developing an eye infection, stop wearing your contact lenses and book an appointment with an eye doctor.  An optometrist is trained to diagnose and prescribe treatment for most eye infections. As well, a medically necessary visit to the optometrist, such as for an eye infection, is often covered by Alberta Health Care.

Properly Use Your Contact Solution And Case

If you are wearing a contact lens which is not replaced daily, you must also practice good hygiene when it comes to your contact lens solution and case. The first thing you should do when you go to remove your lenses, is to make sure that you discard old contact lens solution in your case and replacing it with new solution. Never just top up solution that is already in the case. Also, make sure you clean your case regularly. Because organic material such as skin cells, tears, etc, come into contact with your case, over time a biofilm can start to grow inside your case. Therefor, you should be manually cleaning the case about once a week. To thoroughly clean your case,  take your finger and swish it around inside the case to manually remove anything that may be starting to grow to the inside walls of the case. Next, take hot water and wash out the case thoroughly. Make sure the case has no residual water in it, before storing your lenses inside with new solution. To practice optimal hygiene, when wearing contact lenses Calgary patients are recommended to replace their contact lens case every three months (just as you would your toothbrush). Again failure to comply with proper contact lens solution and case care can result in some very serious eye infections.

Follow Your Eye Care Professionals Recommendations

When wearing contact lenses Calgary eye care professionals will make recommendations to help preserve your vision and eye health. So it is important to follow guidelines set regarding contact lens wear time and replacement schedules. Extending your contact lens wear beyond the recommended wear time can result in common contact lens wear related problems such as giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) or corneal neovascularization (blood vessel growth as a result of oxygen to the cornea). Many eye care practitioners commonly see these conditions in patients who are non-compliant with their contact lens wear.

Have Routine Eye Exams To Maintain Healthy Eyes

When using contact lenses Calgary optometrists recommend patients have annual eye exams. Because contacts can alter both the health and vision of the eyes, it is important to frequently check as well as monitor any changes that may occur due to contact lens wear. At the time of your eye exam, your optometrist will also make sure that the lenses chosen for you in the past are still an optimum fit. As well, they will make sure the lens that you are using is the best for your lifestyle and vision correction.

By following these tips to contact lens wear and care, you will help to preserve and maintain both your vision and eye health for years to come. If you currently don’t wear contact lenses and are looking for more information about you can contact our office, The Glenmore Landing Vision Center at [email protected] or can call our office at (403)255-2826 to book an appointment with our experienced team of Calgary optometrists and licensed contact lens opticians.

Article By Trina Vanaalst

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