Contact Lens Do's, Don'ts & what to do if a problem occurs.
Gently shake the blister pack before opening. Peel back the foil lid. Pour the lens into the palm of your hand or if necessary, gently slide the lens out of the container using your forefinger. Ensure that the lens is not inside out and that you have the appropriate lens for the eye. Inspect your lens prior to insertion, do not insert if damaged. When removing your lenses make sure that your hands are clean and completely dry. Blink fully several times, then while looking up, slide the lens down onto the white part of your eye. Remove the lens by gently pinching it between the thumb and forefinger. Do not pinch the eye tissue. If you find the lens is difficult to grasp due to its lubricity, dry your fingers once more and try again. Do not use rewetting drops in this instance.
· Follow your doctor's instructions and call the optical practice if you have any questions.
· Call your eye care professional if you have any redness, pain, swelling or irritation.
· Report for regularly scheduled follow-up care. Follow-up care is of utmost importance and it is the patient's responsibility to schedule and keep appointments.
· Follow your wearing time schedule as prescribed by your doctor.
· Always thoroughly wash, rinse and dry hands before handling lenses.
· Add a rewetting drop before removing contact lenses.
· Clean your lenses after wear and before storage to avoid buildup of tough protein deposits and oily films that are difficult to remove.
· Be thorough, but careful while cleaning a lens, they can tear, chip or crack.
· Keep soft lenses moist to prevent tearing.
· Clean rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses in the palm of your hand instead of between your fingers. Clean from center to edge rather than in a circular motion.
· Use fresh solution in the storage case each night. Be sure lenses are completely covered with solution when storing in the case.
· Rinse the storage case wells out with warm tap water then with saline after each use and let air dry with the covers off.
· Re-clean lenses that have dropped on the floor or on your clothes.
· Always close drain when working near sink. A dark surface cloth or towel may be used to cover the drain.
· Wear eye protection now that you wear contact lenses. Racket sports, hockey, etc. demand safety eyewear to avoid serious trauma to the eye.
· Avoid contact with sprays and aerosols (hairsprays, deodorants, spray paint, oven cleaner, etc.)
· Apply hairspray, deodorant or spray cologne before lens insertion or keep your eyes tightly closed until the spray has settled. A sprayed lens is very uncomfortable and hard to clean.
· Avoid harmful vapors and fumes especially in work areas while wearing lenses. Wear safety glasses; work under a hood. Inform your employer that you wear contact lenses so that they can recommend safety eyewear if necessary.
· Avoid dusty environments; wear eye protection.
· Use caution when adjusting to temperature extremes such as oven, fireplace, freezer or subzero weather.
· While inserting the lenses, some patients find it easier to hold back the eye lashes, not just the skin folds above and below the lashes.
· Keep storage case and a small bottle of lubricant or saline with you at all times for emergency use.
· Insert contact lenses before you apply all makeup, including lotions and foundations as well as eye cosmetics such as mascara and eye shadow.
· Use oil-free and fragrance-free makeup.
· Remove your contact lenses before you remove your eye makeup.
· Remove all eye makeup daily with a hypoallergenic remover, preferably oil-free.
· Inform your employer that you wear contact lenses, especially if your job involves unsing eye protection equipment
· Check your eyes daily to ensure they look well, feel comfortable and your vision is clear.
· DON'T wear the lenses if they have suddenly or consistently become uncomfortable.
· DON'T wear your lens if you notice a chip or tear in the lens.
· DON'T exceed your wearing schedule by over-wearing lenses during the adjustment period.
· DON'T wear your lenses for the maximum of hours if they have not been worn for a few days.
· DON'T handle your lenses roughly. Avoid contact with fingernails
· DON'T insert your lenses over a sink with an open drain. A dropped lens looks just like a water bubble.
· DON'T move around if a lens is dropped. Check your lashes, clothes, shoes and immediate area around you before moving. A wet lens can stick to almost anything. lf you step on it, you can smash or damage the lens.
· DON'T pick up a dropped lens with your fingernail or push it along a rough surface to lift it. Dampen your finger so the lens can stick to it.
· DON'T start using different brands of solution simultaneously. Introduce them one at a time so if there is a problem you can identify the cause.
· DON'T touch the tip of solution bottles, it can contaminate a sterile bottle of solution. Same applies to lubricating (rewetting) drops.
· DON'T try to wear a soft lens that was left out of solution and has become brittle or if it has taken a long time to locate a dropped lens. Put the lens in saline for at least two hours; then clean it well before wearing.
· DON'T wet lenses by putting them in your mouth.
· DON'T use tap water on soft lenses; use only saline or disinfecting solutions for rinsing.
· DON'T overfill the storage case. An overfilled well can cause the lens to float up to the container edge and be chipped or cut when the lid is snapped or screwed on.
· DON'T force apart a soft lens that folded over onto itself. Put the lens in the palm of your hand and soak it with saline or disinfecting solution until it works itself out with gentle massage.
· DON'T rub the lenses with a towel, a tissue, or a shirt tail. The lens may be scratched.
· DON'T swim or shower while wearing your lenses. Any water (i.e. rain or tears) may flush lenses out of your eyes.
· DON'T wear your lenses if you have a cold or the flu.
· DON'T leave your lenses in "hot sots", i.e.TV tops, glove compartments, window sills, hot sand, etc., they can warp or melt.
· DON'T sleep in your lenses without your doctor's approval.
· DON'T ride in open cars without eye protection. The lenses can blow off the eye.
· DON'T handle lenses with greasy hands; i.e. deodorants or cold cream soaps can leave greasy residue on your hands.
· DON'T wear makeup (or apply your lenses) if your eyes are swollen, red or infected.
· DON'T share contact lenses. DON'T share makeup.
· DON’T use lenses after the expiry date
· DON'T apply mascara at the base of you lashes. Start from the midpoint and extend to the tips. DON'T wear false eyelashes.
· DON'T remove waterproof mascara while lenses are on the eye; it is difficult to remove without cleaners that are abrasive to lens.
· DON'T use eyelash thickeners or lengtheners, they contain fibers and additives that can contaminate lenses.
· DON'T apply eyeliner above the lower lash line. You will block glands that produce the tear film making lens wear more comfortable.
It is possible that the problems might occur and may be first notice as one or more of the following signs :
· Feeling of something in the eye
· Uncomfortable lens
· Eye redness
· Sensitivity to light
· Burning, stinging, itching or watering eyes
· Reduced sharpness of vision
· Rainbows or halos around lights
· Discomfort/ pain
· Severe or persistent dry eyes
These symptoms if ignored can lead to more serious complications!
WHAT TO DO IF PROBLEM OCCURS
If any of the above signs or symptoms occur IMMEDIATELY REMOVE THE LENSE (ES)
· Inspect your eye in a mirror looking for signs or irregularity
· If the discomfort or problem stops, insert a fresh, new lens
· If the above symptoms continue after insertion of a new lens (es) remove the lens (es) immediately and promptly contact your eye care professional. A serious condition such as infection, corneal ulcer or iritis may be present. These conditions could progress rapidly and may lead to permanent loss of vision. Less serious reactions such as abrasion, epithelial staining and bacterial conjunctivitis must be managed and treated early to avoid complications.
· If the lens sticks (stops moving), apply several drops of a lubricant solution and wait until the lens begins to move freely on the eye. If this problem persists, consult your eye care professional.
· Occasional dryness may be relieved by blinking fully several times or by the use of lubricating and rewetting drops. If dryness persists consult your eye care professional.
· If the lens decenters on the eye, close the eye and gently massage the eyelid to return the lens into the central position. If this problem persists consult your eye care professional.
· If he lens tears in your eye, it will feel uncomfortable. Do not panic, as it is impossible to lose a contact lens or a part of a contact lens behind the eye. Remove the pieces carefully by pinching them, as you would do for normal lens removal. If the lens pieces do not seem to remove easily, do not pinch the eye tissue. Rinse with saline. If this does not help, contact your eye care professional for assistance.