There has been a rise in the number of severe eye infections according to the announcements from Moorfields Eye Hospital (MEH). The most worrying one discovered is targeted at contact lens wearers, practitioners and manufacturers. One of the infections included in this worrying discovery is Acanthamoeba keratitis. This issue is being taken quite seriously by MEH where a campaign to heighten awareness among students has started as terms begin. Other plans are to encourage practitioners to reinforce the care and hygiene steps for lens wearers in the hope they can change their habits.
Top Tips For Contact Lens Care:
- Wash AND dry hands before handling lenses
- When washing use soaps free from oils or perfumes
- Dry hands with a lint-free towel
- Don't use sharp objects like finger nails or tweezers to handle your contact lens
- Check the lens is clean before putting it in
- Make sure the lens isn't damaged before insertion
Whilst research can not pinpoint the exact reasoning behind this increase, they can only reiterate the advice that would be given to everyone who wears contacts lens. Avoid water, whether it be showering, swimming or hot tubs. There are plans to study domestic water in the hope the findings can rule out contamination. Sleeping with your lens in also carries a increased risk. Over wearing them and not washing hands before removal or insertion are all easy measures to avoid infections.
These may all seem like very simple and logical no-no's but until such times that there is a drop in infection statistics, reiterating these key points becomes all the more important.
"Contact Lens Ayala" by איתן טל - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Contact_Lens_Ayala.jpg#mediaviewe...