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Big Dos and Don’ts of Contact Lenses

With an estimated four million wearers in the UK, contact lenses are a convenient alternative to glasses, offering users a lightweight and discreet way to keep their eyes happy and healthy. They are just as easy to get your hands on as glasses with online stores. But for your contact lenses to be effective, they need to be worn and cared for properly. We take a peek at some of the big dos and don’ts in contact lenses.

Focus on contact lens on finger of young woman. Young woman holding contact lens on finger in front of her face. Woman holding contact lens on grey background. Eyesight and eyecare concept.


Follow your optician’s advice.

Your lenses have been prescribed for you and need to be worn as directed by your eye specialist.

Following your optician’s advice will also help to protect your new lenses and ensure you are not risking your own eye health.

Wash your hands before handling, inserting, or removing your contact lenses.

You must wash your hands thoroughly to keep your eyes hygienically clean.

Using a fragrance-free soap and drying your hands on a lint-free cloth will prevent any potential infection-causing germs, debris, or irritants from transferring onto your eye.

Store your lenses properly.

When not worn, your contact lenses need to be cleaned after removal and stored safely using an appropriate solution.

You also need to use a fresh cleaning solution every time and thoroughly clean your lens storage case in warm, soapy water once a week to avoid any bacteria building up.

Remove them before you go to bed.

Your lenses were not designed to be worn for excessive amounts of time and, ideally, for no longer than eight hours sleeping in them is a no-no. (

Your lenses need you to blink to keep them moist and clean regularly, so sleeping in them can cause you problems with dryness and also make you more prone to eye infections.


Keep wearing your lenses if your eyes are irritated.

Red, sore, burning, or uncomfortable eyes are a sign that your eyes are not happy and, if left unresolved, could lead to further irritation and potential infection, explains Healthline.

Also, avoid rubbing your eyes when wearing your contacts.

Removing your lenses and wearing your glasses will help your eyes have calmed down but if the irritation persists, seek professional advice.

Mix up your right and left lenses.

Each of your eyes will have its prescription lenses, which shouldn’t be switched.

Using a marked ‘left and right lens case and getting into the habit of putting your lens into the same eye first each time can help you avoid any mix-ups.

Use tap water to clean your lenses.

Water contains bacteria that could leave your eyes prone to infection, as can your own saliva.

Over ever, use a cleaning solution specifically formulated for contact lenses and never re-use it.

Wear your lenses when swimming, showering, or bathing.

Your contact lenses are delicate, as are your eyes, and you don’t want to risk contamination.

Water carries minute bacteria which can lead to problems, including infections in your eye.

Remove your contacts before entering the water.

Miss your next eye appointment.

Seeing your eye specialist regularly will enable you to maintain your eye health and also ensure you wear the correct lens prescription, as it can change over time.

And your eyes are incredibly precious, so never be tempted to skip that next follow-up.

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