The American Optometric Association has issued a list of precautions for contact lens wearers to prevent eye infections in flood ravaged areas of the Midwest. High temperatures and standing water are risk factors for some serious eye infections. Acanthamoeba is a major concern and could potentially cause vision impairment.
The following steps should maximize one’s safety when using contact lens:
— Remove contact lenses prior to entering flood waters or before other water activities including swimming
— Contact lens wearers who regularly sleep in contact lenses as prescribed should refrain from doing so if exposed to water
— Always sterilize contact lens cases and wash and dry hands prior to handling lenses
According to the AOA, proper lens hygiene and compliance includes using fresh cleaning or disinfecting solution each time lenses are cleaned and stored. Additionally, most solutions are approved for use without rubbing; however, optometrists are recommending that patients rub their lenses to enhance cleaning for additional safety.