DALLAS — Most contact lens wearers in the United States put their eyes at risk by cutting corners and adopting bad habits when it comes to contact lens care and hygiene practices, according to a recent global survey conducted by Wakefield Research for Alcon.
The findings from the survey of 1,000 contact lens wearers in the United States indicate that 76% of consumers surveyed wouldn’t bathe in yesterday’s bath water, yet 92% of U.S. contact lens wearers surveyed reuse or “top-off” lens solution, instead of pouring it out and using fresh solution each day. This common habit does not effectively clean or disinfect contact lenses, and can actually put a person's eye health at risk.
According to the survey, a majority of consumers admit to a number of behaviors that could lead to dirty lenses and, ultimately, discomfort or infection. For example, storing contact lenses in tap water rather than in disinfecting solution (35% of wearers in the U.S.) or failing to rinse lenses with disinfecting solution before placing them in their lens storage case (55% of wearers in the U.S.). Other common “bad habits” included:
Wearing lenses for additional or more days than recommended by the manufacturer (66%); failing to disinfect your contact lenses overnight and before taking them out of the lens case and putting them in your eye; and rinsing a contact lens by putting it in the mouth, instead of using disinfecting solution.