Millions of people wear contacts every day and may not be aware of the special care they require. Contacts need to be properly cleaned and stored in order to avoid serious eye infections. There are many options for cleansing systems. The choice depends on the type of lens you use, if you have allergies or if your eyes tend to form protein deposits. Ask your eye doctor what kind of cleaning solutions you should use. Always be sure to follow your eye care provider’s instructions exactly. For general care and cleaning tips, check out the recommended steps below.
- Wash your hands with soap and water and dry them with a lint-free towel before touching your contact lenses.
- Use a “rub and rinse” cleaning method, if indicated. Rub your contact lenses with clean fingers, then rinse the lenses with solution before soaking them. Use this method even if the solution you are using is a “no-rub” type.
- Never put contacts in your mouth to wet them. Saliva (spit) is not a sterile solution.
- Do not rinse or store contacts in water (tap or sterile water).
- Never use a homemade saline solution.
- Use new solution each time you clean and disinfect your contact lenses. Never reuse or top off old solution.
- Do not pour contact lens solution into a different bottle. The solution will no longer be sterile.
- Make sure the tip of the solution bottle does not touch any surface. Keep the bottle tightly closed when you are not using it.
- Never use solutions with a red tip directly in the eye.
- If you use a hydrogen peroxide-based solution, it must go through the full disinfection process.
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