Due to COVID-19, some patients have expressed concerns about whether contact lens use is safe during the pandemic. Given that inserting contact lenses requires touching your eyes, there are concerns about increased risk of exposure to the virus. Read on as we shed light on this question.
Do Contact Lenses Increase COVID-19 Risks?
The number of Google searches for hand washing techniques has skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic. For contact lens wearers, proper hand washing is all the more important because of the need to touch your eyes.
This has led some patients to ask whether it would be safer to switch to eyeglasses. Medical authorities, including the American Optometric Association (AOA) and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), have stated that wearing contact lenses does not increase the risk of COVID-19 infection, provided you wash your hands properly before touching your contact lenses.
Hand Washing and Contact Lenses
To keep your contact lenses free of contamination — COVID-19 or otherwise — it’s important that you touch them only when needed, and only with clean hands. Any eye doctor would agree that frequent hand washing is the best way to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading disease through your contacts.
Wash your hands with water and antibacterial soap for at least 20 seconds, then dry them using unused paper towels. Dispose of used paper towels immediately. Carry a bottle of hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol in your pocket or your bag. Use it if you have no access to clean water and soap. Avoid touching your face.
Make it a habit to disinfect your contact lenses frequently. It’s also a good idea to wear daily disposables. Visit Alderwood Optical for more information and for optical care. You can also call us at (425) 771-8472 or use our form for an appointment. We serve patients in Bothell, WA.