There are, of course, a few additional tricks you could try to ensure your peepers remain in good health during the summer months. To make sure you’re keeping on top of your lens care, here are our four top tips for contact lens wearers.
1. Take your contacts out before going for a swim
If you’re off on holiday this summer, you may be tempted to take a dip in the pool or the ocean to cool off as the temperatures rise, and while you may think nothing of going for a swim in your contact lenses, you could be putting your eye health at risk.
The truth is, nearly all bodies of water contain a microorganism called Acanthamoeba. If these microbes get under your lens and are left to multiply, the acanthamoeba organisms can cause irritation or even a serious eye infection called Acanthamoeba Keratitis.
It is best to avoid wearing contact lenses altogether when you swim, however if you have no choice, then wearing watertight goggles is essential and remember to dispose of your lenses immediately after you get out of the pool or sea, even if you don’t feel that any water has gotten in your eyes. You should use rewetting drops to rinse out your eyes and use a fresh new pair of lenses.
2. Wear Sunglasses
Wearing sunglasses in the summer is an essential whether you wear contact lenses or not as they protect your eyes from the sun's harmful UVA and UVB rays. Another not so obvious reason for contact lens wearers to wear a pair of sunglasses is that they can protect your eyes and contact lenses from the winds drying effects.
It is essential for contact lenses to retain enough moisture in order to function properly and sunglasses provide a barrier against the wind which could otherwise significantly dry your eyes and contact lenses.
3. Wear contact lenses with built in UV protection
Many contact lens brands feature UVA and UVB blocker embedded in their lens designs. While contact lenses with built in UV protection are not a substitute for a good pair of high-quality sunglasses, they will still reduce your exposure to the sun's harmful rays. We recommend combining UV blocking lenses with sunglasses for full protection.
4. Treat your allergies
It can be tricky to keep allergies at bay, particularly in the height of summer. Itchy, watery and sore eyes are symptoms of common conditions such as hay fever, which can cause great discomfort if you’re a contact lens wearer.
So, to ensure that you’re in control of your eye health this sunny season, make sure you stock up on effective treatments for when your allergies crop up. For example, you could try using allergy tablets or a nasal spray that contain an antihistamine. The Eye Doctor Allergy Mask is a brilliant cold compress, that helps to relieve symptoms of allergies, headaches, puffy and itchy eyes. To find a treatment that is suitable for you, you should speak to your pharmacist or optician.
Instilling artificial tears such as our Blink Intensive Tears Vials or rewetting eye drops can also help relieve allergy symptoms by cleaning away any pollen, dust or grit. In addition to this, they can relieve dry eye caused by air conditioning and long days spent outdoors in the sunshine. Many of our rewetting drops can be used with contact lenses and will keep your lenses hydrated and your eyes feeling comfortable.
Take extra care when applying sunscreen
As the weather perks up, it’s likely you'll want to bask in the sun’s glorious rays. While using sunscreen is a must to ensure your body is protected, it’s important that you take extra care when you’re applying it to your face.
As a contact lens wearer, it’s vital that you’re especially wary not to get the cream in your eyes. If you do, they can relieve dry eye caused by air you may experience a painful stinging sensation and you will also risk contaminating your lenses. To avoid this, use your fingers to delicately rub the product around your eyes, not forgetting your eyelids.
Give your eyes a break
Whether it’s just for a day or a whole weekend, it’s a good idea to give your eyes a break from your contact lenses. While choosing to wear your lenses each day is perfectly safe in most cases, many opticians advise wearing glasses occasionally to give your eyes a rest and keep your eye health in check. Also make sure to get regular eye tests to help monitor your eye health and any eye related health issues over time.
Wear daily disposable contact lenses
For convenience this summer, you could also try using daily contact lenses. When you’ve had enough of wearing them, you can simply discard these lenses and use a fresh pair the next time you want to enjoy clear vision without your glasses. At Feel Good Contacts, we stock a range of disposable lenses from a variety of brands, such as comfi Daily Disposable and 1 Day Acuvue Moist.
Bearing these tips in mind should help you keep your eyes healthy and safe all summer long.