What happens if I accidentally cleaned my soft lens with cleaner meant for rigid gas permeable lenses?
SEP 21, 2015
What happens if I accidentally cleaned my soft lens with cleaner meant for rigid gas permeable lens?
Do not soak soft contact lenses in solutions meant for rigid, gas-permeable lenses. Rigid gas permeable contact solutions are much stronger than solutions meant for soft lenses, and will quickly ruin your soft contacts.
If you do accidentally do this, discard the lenses and start with fresh lenses. (Most contemporary contacts are only meant for 1 day, or 2- or 4-week use anyway.)
Follow these tips to avoid a contact lens–related injury to your eyes:
- Never use solutions which aren't meant for soft lenses.
- Don't mix solutions, or use one system's solution in another's container. One kind of solution, diluted hydrogen peroxide, must be used with its specific container with a catalyst in it, which turns the hydrogen peroxide into saline and oxygen. Forget the catalyst, and you will put hydrogen peroxide in your eye. (It is as painful as it sounds!)
- Never rinse your contacts with tap water, which has acanthamoeba (a tiny organism that can cause infection) in it, or saliva (full of bacteria).
- If your contact is uncomfortable, take it out, inspect it for tears or defects, rinse it out, and—if your eye feels okay—put it back in. If it isn't comfortable, don't wear it. Wear your glasses.
- Which brings us to this: always have a pair of glasses you can use when your contacts aren't comfortable. You can aggravate an infection in the eye by wearing a contact lens over an infection or scratch.
- Call your ophthalmologist if you have blurred vision, pain, or redness. Most ophthalmologists have emergency slots. Bring your contacts and your solutions so we can inspect and culture them for bacteria if needed.
- Don't over-wear your contacts. Two-week contacts should only be worn for two weeks (removing them every night), not until they are uncomfortable. And never sleep in your contacts! Sleeping in contacts increases the risk of corneal ulcer or deep infection in the eye.
Contacts are great and give you years of excellent vision with comfort and safety if these basic rules are followed. I love my contacts and I hope you love yours!