Say goodbye to glasses – Learn good contact lens care
Currently, 80% of Singapore’s 18 year olds are myopic. This figure has seen gradual increase over the past years and is expected to rise further. More and more teenagers in Singapore are becoming myopic or have refractive errors. As a result, many teenagers have to wear spectacles in order for them to see well.
Often, wearing spectacles may not be aesthetically pleasing and can be considered as an inconvenience to the wearer. Hence, teenagers may wish to treat their refractive error using Lasik. However, as teenagers are still growing, there may be chances that their refractive error may change as it has yet to stabilise. The effect of Lasik may not be as lasting as getting it done when they are older. Teenagers can opt for Lasik treatment when they are older.
For the time being, it’s best to stick with the good old spectacles or contact lenses. If you decide to opt for contact lens over your spectacles, it is important to take good care of your contact lens.
Undeniably, contact lenses or cosmetics lenses are gaining popularity with teenagers these days.
“Teenagers wear cosmetic colour contact lenses to physically alter how their pupils look, making it look in however colour they like. Cosmetic lenses also make their eyes look more radiant”
Dr Lee Jong Jian, Consultant Ophthalmologist at Raffles Hospital Eye Centre
Proper care to healthy eye and vision
Cosmetic lenses are no different from conventional contact lenses. It is therefore important to practise good lens and eye care.
“The eyes are probably one of the most important organs in our body. Hence it is very important to take good care of them. Most importantly, unlike the conventional contact lenses, colour contact lens are laid with a layer of colour pigments and they tend to reduce oxygen permeability, thus, a higher tendency of getting contact lens related eye infection,” said Dr Lee.
Dr Lee also said that infection is often due to mishandling of the lenses, wearing them for long hours, sleeping or swimming with contact lens on.
“If you practise good contact lens and eye care with good hygiene and you do not wear them for more than 8 hours, you are less likely to get contact lens related infection.”
Dr Lee also warned about getting contact lens off the Internet or getting them from unauthorised shops.
“Contact lens users should always get a proper contact lens assessment by an optometrist or ophthalmologist before getting the proper contact lens prescription,” said Dr Lee.
Dr Lee stresses that clean and safe handling of contact lenses is one of the most important measures wearers can take to protect their sight.
It is not worth to losing your sight just to look better.
Tips for good contact lens care:
- Before handling your contact lens, wash your hands thoroughly with a mild soap. Make sure that your hands are free from contaminants.
- Always ensure you use your fingertips (and not your nails!) when removing the lenses from your eyes. Keep your nails short and clean.
- After removal, immediately clean, rinse and disinfect your lens thoroughly.
- Ensure that your contact lens care solution is fresh and not expired. Follow carefully the chemical system of sterilisation.
- Do not use saliva or tap water for re-wetting. Saliva can spread infection to the eye while tap water has chlorine and other chemicals that are harmful to the eye.
- Rinse your lens case with solutions recommended by your eye care professional and always keep it clean.
- Replace your contact lenses as recommended by your eye care professional as well as the manufacturer of the lens.
- If you experience any problems with your vision, remove your contact lens immediately and consult your eye care professional right away. Discomfort can be an early sign of a more serious complication, and early treatment can have a significant impact on overcoming problems associated with improper contact lens care.
Follow the above-mentioned tips to avoid any adverse effects.