One of the risks of using contact lenses is infection, which mainly results from improper care. The following write-up provides information on this eye problem.
Contact lenses offer an easy way out for people who do not wish to wear glasses everyday. Besides correcting vision problems, certain specialized lenses can also help treat certain eye conditions. However, wearing them also comes with its own share of disadvantages. Improper use of soft contact lenses can put a person at an increased risk of developing eye infections.
Eye Problems Associated With the Use of Contacts
Wearing contacts for an extended period of time or wearing them overnight reduces the amount of oxygen reaching to the cornea. This could damage the surface of the cornea, putting one at a risk of developing corneal ulceration. This condition is characterized by the formation of open sores in the outer layer of the cornea. There is also the risk of developing dry eyes.
Improper use of lenses might also make one susceptible to conjunctivitis. This is an eye condition that is characterized by the infection or inflammation of the conjunctiva. The factor which mainly causes this infection is poor hygiene.
Dry eyes occur when the eye does not produce sufficient amount of tears, or produces bad quality tears. Lenses might absorb water from the natural tear film of the eye. In this way the tear production might lessen, thereby triggering the development of dry eyes.
This refers to the inflammation of the cornea. It can be infectious or non-infectious. Amoebic keratitis and bacterial keratitis are types of keratitis that might affect people who wear lenses.
The symptoms might vary, depending upon the type of infection. Affected individuals might experience:
- Reddening of one or both the eyes
- Eye discharge
- Pain in the eyes
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Itching that may be accompanied by a burning sensation
- Gritty sensation in the eye
- Excessive tearing
- Feeling eye fatigue after short periods of reading
- Scratchy sensation in the eyes
An eye infection is best treated by a medical professional. As soon as you notice the symptoms, visit an ophthalmologist. Eye infections cannot be prevented completely. However, there are a few measures that can be followed to reduce the risks significantly. These measures are all a part of practicing good personal hygiene.
- Never ignore the need to clean, and dry your hands thoroughly before handling the lenses.
- Avoid using the lenses overnight, or while sleeping. Although some lenses have been designed for extended use, prolonged use increases the risk of infection.
- Never prepare homemade solutions to rinse your contact lenses. Always and only use commercially-prepared, sterile solutions for this purpose. Always use fresh solution.
- Using saliva to wet the lenses is not a good idea, hygienically and otherwise too. Follow what is recommended by the doctor.
- Remove lenses before swimming or bathing.
- Follow the advice of the doctor regarding the duration for which the lenses should be worn.
Eye infections must not be taken lightly. Eyes are among the most sensitive parts of the body. An infection may seem to be mild initially, but you never know when it might take on an ugly form, and make matters worse. So if you are a contact lens wearer, and your eyes are turning red or itching more than usual, visit an eye specialist and fix the problem as soon as possible.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.