Eye health does not always correspond to overall health, but a few simple suggestions can improve your eye health.
Visual Comfort and Ergonomics:
Lighting: When reading, choose a light source strong enough that you can clearly see the words without straining, but not so bright that it produces a glare on the page or device.
Computer usage: Take frequent breaks by focusing on a distant object for a few minutes every 20-30 minutes. This will relax the focusing system and reduce the risk of developing a condition called Accommodative Spasm.
Moisturize: In dry environments, like an airplane cabin, or when using a computer for an extended period of time, use lubricating eye drops to reduce the chance of injury and infection. Avoid “redness-relief” type drops, as they can be habit forming.
Sun Exposure: UV exposure can harm your eyes, even on overcast days. Prolonged exposure hastens the development of cataracts, and increases the risk of developing macular degeneration and even eye growths or lesions. Make sure your eyeglasses and sunglasses have UV-protection to reduce your risk.
Hygiene and Care
For optimal eye health, it is important to follow your eye doctor’s instructions regarding hygiene, lens care, wear time and disposal intervals.
Before handling any type of contact lenses, wash and rinse hands thoroughly, using mild non-cosmetic soap. Dry your hands with a lint-free towel. By keeping fingernails short and smooth you may avoid damaging the lenses or scratching the eye.
Only use lens care products recommended by your eye doctor. Always empty and rinse your case, then leave open during the day to air dry, each time you insert your contacts in your eyes. Never save, reuse or “top off” old solution in your case. Make sure the lens solution you are using is appropriate for your eye health and the type of lens you use. Rotate your contact case with a sterilized one every 2 weeks. The case may be sterilized by boiling in water, soaking in alcohol, or running it through the dishwasher in the basket. Make sure to rinse and air dry the case after sterilization.
Replace the contact lens storage case you use every three months. Rinse the storage case daily with a sterile rinsing solution. Let the storage case air dry.
Never use tap water to clean or soak contact lenses, because tap water contains microscopic organisms that can cause serious and sight-threatening eye infections. Never put a contact lens in your mouth, ever.
If your eyes are red or irritated, do not use contacts. If they become red or irritated while wearing contacts, remove the contacts immediately. If the symptoms do not resolve within 30 minutes, call the office. Pain and redness may indicate infection or injury, which can get worse over time and may cause scarring or permanent vision loss. EyeContact maintains 24-7 on call emergency service, which may be accessed by calling the main office number, 713.520.6600.
At EyeContact, we simply do not believe in abusing the eyes for the sake of convenience. We believe you deserve to know the facts, and then you may make educated decisions about the risks you are willing to take with your own eyes. It is recommended that even patients who have no problems or symptoms relating to contact lens use routinely remove their contacts approximately 3 hours before bedtime every night. Sleeping in contact lenses, or even wearing contacts up until bedtime, is not recommended because it greatly increases your risks of infection and permanent damage. Some types of infections leave scars, which could cause permanent loss of visual clarity. At EyeContact we strongly recommend that all clients remove their contacts, even “Extended Wear” contacts, prior to sleep. While perhaps an inconvenience, your eye health is our primary concern and your eye safety demands a true understanding of the risks involved. When you are fit with contacts by one of our doctors, you will know how to use your contacts in a way that will reduce your risks of injury or permanent damage.