1. Hygiene is of critical importance when handling contact lenses. Hands must be washed well with soap and water and dried with a clean towel or tissue paper prior to handling your contact lens (both during insertion and removal). Personal hygiene like short clean fingernails go a long way in preventing damage to your contact lenses and avoiding other related issues like allergies and infections.
2. Always rub and rinse your contact lenses after removing them from the eye in prescribed contact lens solutions only and store them in the designated contact lens cases always.
3. Always refill the contact lens solution in the cases regularly and do not simply top off the solution. The expiry date of the solution should be regularly checked and strictly avoid using expired solutions. The contact lens storage cases must be regularly cleaned with a clean toothbrush and fresh contact lens solution. It is common for dirt and grime to collect in the ridges of these cases and contaminate the contact lens and its solution. It is ideal to replace the contact lens storage case every 3 months.
4. Never overwear your contact lenses. Adhere to the prescribed replacement schedules whether daily, fortnightly or monthly. Always take out your contact lenses before sleeping, showering or swimming.
5. It is a good idea to always keep a pair of backup spectacle lenses in case you are advised discontinuation of your contact lenses. I often see patients, especially those with high refractive errors, who do not own a pair of glasses, feeling completely lost when they see us with allergies or infections and are recommended immediate discontinuation of their lenses. These patients are generally with contact lens related issues because they do not adhere to the basic rules of lens wear in the first place.
6. And finally, we instruct every CL wearer to discontinue lens wear immediately in the event of any suspected eye problem, however trivial it may be perceived and to seek immediate qualified medical attention.