23.08.2012

Water sports "can be complicated" for glasses wearers

Water sports "can be complicated" for glasses wearers

By Alexa Kaczka

Taking part in water sports can be particularly difficult for people who wear glasses, according to one expert who has pointed out the possible pitfalls of, and solutions to, the practice.

Gavin Rebello, sports vision specialist at @eye_performance, said that water-based sports are always a little bit more complicated than other sports, because the first worry is that the lens might float off and the second is infection.

There are many bugs that can live in the water that is safe to drink, but people's eyes are not so accommodating, one of which is acanthamoeba, he pointed out.

As a result, if people's eyes are in the water a lot, such as when swimming, then it is very important to wear goggles, which will go a long way to protecting the eyes.

"The safest way is to get prescription goggles so you don't need to wear lenses. People can get them for about £35 - they aren't expensive and they will probably cover 85 per cent of prescriptions," he added.

For those who can't wear prescription goggles, the best option is to don daily lenses and then put their on goggles over the top.

Once they finish swimming, they need to remove the lenses and wait for 30 minutes before inserting new ones to give the eyes a chance to rest.

There are some water-based sports where people cannot wear goggles, such as water polo, where it is banned in the regulations, but nevertheless poses difficulties for people.

He advised: "You must discuss wearing lenses and your water-based sport with your optician - there may be other factors they need to consider and you should not take this advice as right for everyone."

For those who are still not content, there are a couple of other options, such as having laser surgery, which would mean people would not need glasses at all, while another is Ortho-K, where contact lenses are won overnight and gradually reshape the eye so that during the day people have perfect sight.

by Martin Burns


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