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Healthy Contact Lens Wear

Woman with contact lens on fingerYou only have one pair of eyes, so take care of them!

When cared for properly, contact lenses can provide a comfortable and convenient way to work, play, and live for the more than 40 million people in the U.S. who wear them. While contact lenses are usually a safe and effective form of vision correction, they are not entirely risk-free—especially if they are not cared for properly. To reap the benefits of wearing contact lenses, it is essential to practice healthy habits.

Healthy Habits=Healthy Eyes

Enjoy the comfort and benefits of contact lenses while lowering your chance of complications. Failure to wear, clean, and store your lenses as directed by your eye doctor raises the risk of developing serious infections and other complications. Contact lens-related eye infections can lead to long-lasting damage but are often preventable. Even minor infections can be painful and disrupt day-to-day life. Your habits, supplies, and eye doctor are all essential to keeping your eyes healthy. Contact lens wearers should take simple steps to prevent contact-lens related eye infections.

	Graphic: Take Them Out! Sleeping in contacts increases the risk of eye infection up to 8 times.

For example:

  1. Don't sleep in your contact lenses unless prescribed to do so by your eye doctor.
  2. Replace your contact lenses as often as prescribed by your eye doctor
  3. Don't "top off" solution. Use only fresh contact lens solution in your case—never mix fresh solution with old or used solution.

A full list of CDC's contact lens wear and care recommendations is available on the Healthy Contact Lens website.

What CDC is Doing

August 22 – 26, 2016, marks the 3rd annual Contact Lens Health Week. CDC organized Contact Lens Health Week as a strategy to increase public awareness and encourage contact lens wearers to adopt healthy habits that can reduce their chances of getting an eye infection.

A number of tools and materials are available to help promote Contact Lens Health Week and healthy contact lens wear and care throughout the year.

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