Bad personal habits are difficult to get rid of, but you need to before the habit turns into a serious health risk for you. A lot of people tend to lick their contact lenses for making them moist to before putting them in their eyes. How did that horrible idea even strikes you?
You are harming yourself by putting germs in your eyes and increasing the risk of contracting an eye disease that might permanently destroy your eyes and leave you blind. Ophthalmologist Thomas Steinmann, MD said at a conference that your mouth is easily one of the dirtiest parts of your body as it is completely filled with bacteria. Steinmann is also a clinical spokesperson for American Association of Ophthalmologist.
Everyone nowadays uses soft contact lenses that are quite absorbent and absorb any liquid they come in contact with. So, it is obvious that licking your contacts will make them absorb the tiny bacteria along with your saliva. When you put the contacts in your eyes, they will directly attack the corneas and infect them.
One of the most common infections that can occur is corneal ulcer or keratitis, which is an infection of the outermost layer of the eye. Dr Steinmann mentioned that not treating the disease aggressively might lead to vision loss and complete blindness as well. The infection is caused by Acanthamoeba, a single-celled microorganism and is very painful. One of the early symptoms include irritation in the eye, scratchiness, and light sensitivity. If you aren’t careful, the symptoms can quickly escalate.
It means that you shouldn’t be surprised if you have to make a visit to the ER all of a sudden or get prescribed antibiotics that you would need to take to deal with the message. Licking your contacts is never a good idea, simple because our body saliva isn’t meant to help you clean it…
What if you aren’t infected?
If you are lucky, you’ll only suffer from mild symptoms including a pink eye. Even though it isn’t a serious infection, pink eye or conjunctivitis is quite disgusting. This brings us to an important question – what do you if you can’t find the contact solution? The answer is simple – get into your car and go to the drug store. Buy the same kind of solution. In the most extreme situation where you can’t go to the drug store, rinse the contact lenses using tap water.
Don’t use saline because it is only a wetting agent and doesn’t clean the lenses. Despite taking all precautionary measures, your eyes are getting dry or irritating consult a doctor immediately. Either the lenses or the solution might not be suiting your eyes. Whatever, the problem might be, don’t Google it because the search engine will make you worry by telling that you’ll lose your eyesight.
It is a good idea to visit an ophthalmologist when you can. They can help you diagnose the problem and understand why you have the licking problem. Additionally, they can help you deal with it, so you can ensure you don’t have to worry about any infections.