With the recent revelations that some people are using bizarre homemade solutions to clean their contact lenses, one expert has claimed that wearers should know how to clean their lenses in order to keep their eyes safe.
Nick Dash, an optometrist from Visual Edge Optometrists, said that contact lenses are in close contact with a very sensitive part of the body so should be cared for appropriately.
"They are technically classified as 'medical devices' and therefore need to be treated with care," he explained.
Research carried out on behalf of Biotrue multi-purpose contact lens solution, revealed a number of contact lens cleaning horror stories.
It revealed that baby oil, beer, coke, petroleum jelly, lemonade, fruit juice and butter have all been used in past in place of contact lens solution, with as many as 20 per cent of wearers trying bizarre cleaning routines.
Spit, or saliva, also featured highly on the list of alternatives people have tried, but with the average adult mouth containing 500 to 1,000 different types of bacteria, it is not a recommended form of eye lubrication.
The same could be said of water, of which 16 per cent of contact lens wearers surveyed listed. Tap and distilled water may contain bacteria that can cause damage to the eye and have been associated with Acanthamoeba keratitis, a corneal infection that is resistant to treatment.
As well as not disinfecting lenses, water fails to remove proteins which can build up if not treated correctly and cause discomfort to the wearer.
"Using any liquids or substances that are not designed for use near the eye isn't something that should be taken lightly, as this can lead to lasting damage," Mr Dash continued.
Mr Dash added that making sure contact lenses are cleaned and conditioned using the correct solutions is the best way to clean the products and protect wearers from eye problems associated with poor contact lens hygiene.
by Alexa Kaczka