Storing coloured contact lenses in the correct way is very important to avoid introducing infection into your eyes. The eye is naturally very sensitive, and because it treats contact lenses as foreign bodies, they must be clean and disinfected before insertion to avoid any complications arising from use. This sounds like a difficult process but it’s not, as products have been specifically designed to help ensure your contact lenses remain clean at all times.
However, you must take certain steps to ensure adequate hygiene as these products work best when you follow instructions carefully. Each product will have their own set of instructions so you should read the leaflets provided and ensure you’re comfortable with each step before you carry it out.
In general clean solutions fit into two categories:
- Hydrogen Peroxide: These are very effective at destroying bacteria but must be neutralised overnight using the special catalytic lens disc included. Inserting un-neutralised solution into your eye will cause significant pain and may require medical supervision.
- All-in-one: These do not require neutralisation and you can simply leave your lenses in the solution to kill germs. All-in-one solutions are also very versatile because you can use them to ‘rub’ the lens clean if you need to reinsert them quickly, something you can’t do with hydrogen peroxide solutions (our effective lens cleaning solution is an all-in-one product).
Whichever solution you use please remember to re-read all instructions, even if you have used the product before.
In general whenever you handle your lenses don’t forget to wash your hands thoroughly using soap without fragrance or moisturisers, and dry them on a clean towel. This is especially true when inserting your lenses but when removing them you should minimise germs so your cleaning solution can do its job effectively.
Here are a number of useful tips that you should also remember when storing your contact lenses:
- Saline should not be used to clean your lenses as it is not a disinfectant and has no effect on pathogens. It can be used to rinse lenses prior to insertion if you find your cleaning solution irritates your eyes but do not rely on it for cleaning, as you risk infecting your eyes.
- Contact lens solution should be used once only, as you may be re-infecting your lenses if you use it again. Use fresh solution every time you clean your fashion lenses.
- Never rinse your lens case or allow it to come into contact with anything other than the lens solution or sterile saline – this includes saliva and tap water.
- Never share contact lenses or lens cases with another person as this increases the chance of infection.
- If you clean your lenses and they remain in the lens case for over 24 hours, ensure you re-clean them before insertion. This helps ensure effective pathogen removal.
- After removing your lenses from the case, rinse the case with saline and allow to air dry – never use a tissue to wipe it. Replace your case after 30 days, or every time you replace your lenses.
- Wash your hands before handling the solution or lenses case – you don’t want germs to be transferred.
- Never let the tip of your contact lenses solution bottle come into contact with anything as this can contaminate the solution each time you pour it, effectively adding pathogens to your case each time.