We’re sometimes guilty of not paying attention to the expiration date when it comes to medical products. It might be down to us assuming that we’ll be finished with our prescription long before that date comes along. However, in the case of contact lenses and solutions, we recommend that you pay extra attention to the instructions on the packaging.
Why do contact lenses expire?
Contact lenses are manufactured and then immediately sterilised before packaging. This allows them to remain uncontaminated and very hygienic when they are opened. However, the packaging that comes with the lenses will usually have an air-tight seal on it. And in the seal’s case, over a number of years it can actually become compromised and start allowing air inside. This can lead to the contamination of the lens and of the solution that it is rests inside of.
Why should you not wear expired contact lenses?
There are a number of reasons why you should never wear contact lenses that have passed their expiration date. Firstly, the seal may have broken, in which case the influx of air into the packaging can lead to the growth of bacteria or possible fungal contamination. Obviously this could be very harmful if it came into contact with your eyes. On top of this, there is also the risk that the solution itself can either turn more acidic or more alkaline. Whichever direction the solution would go in on the pH scale could result in great discomfort and even an infection.
How to check if they have expired?
The packaging usually displays the expiration date of the lenses in a yyyy/mm format. In most cases, this date will be approximately 3 or 4 years after the lens was first manufactured… so not too long after you purchased them. However, it can’t hurt to be cautious, and to check the date on the packaging before you insert the lenses.
Our team at Feel Good Contacts are devoted to ensuring the safety of our customers, and of their eyes. We hope that you’ve found this blog post informative and that you’ll pay closer attention to the expiration date displayed on your contact lens packaging.