Build-Up On Your Contact Lenses: Here’s What to Do
Contact lenses improve your vision, right? That’s what they’re supposed to do! If your vision looks fuzzy through your contacts and you know your prescription hasn’t changed, there’s a good chance you could be dealing with dirty lenses!
Yuck! Dirty lenses? Gross, right? The truth is, you can wash your hands with soap and water, use the saline solution, even clean your lenses every night and still deal with some amount of build-up on your contact lenses.
Blame it on your tears.
The eyes’ natural production of tears causes protein build-up on your contact lenses. Though it’s not necessarily harmful in the short term for build-up to accumulate, you need to make sure that extra protein is getting regularly cleaned off for a variety of health reasons.
First, build-up on your contact lenses can impede your vision. Second, if build-up isn’t cleaned off regularly, it can ruin your lenses ability to retain moisture and filter oxygen properly. In other words, excess protein build-up on your contact lenses makes them hard to see through and uncomfortable to wear.
That kind of defeats the purpose of wearing contacts to begin with!
Fortunately, there’s an easy way to avoid the consequences of protein build-up. There are two options. Here’s how to effectively deal with contact lens build-up:
Hydrogen Peroxide-Based Solution
The first option is to use a hydrogen peroxide-based contact lens cleaning system. When your contact lenses soak in this type of solution (usually overnight or for no less than six hours), all of the gunk, including protein deposits, gets cleared off of the lenses.
These solutions often come with a special case for you to place your lenses in while you clean them. The case contains a little disc in it that forms a chemical reaction with that peroxide and cleans your lenses thoroughly. After the bubbling is over, the disc neutralizes the peroxide solution so you can put your clean lenses right back in your eyes.
A second option for those who deal with excess protein build-up is to switch to daily contact lenses. I am a huge fan of daily lenses. The experience of having a fresh, clean lens to put in every morning is unbeatable. The convenience of never having to clean your lenses is also great. All you have to do is throw them away each night.
If your contact lenses don’t seem as clear as they used to be, or if you’re experiencing the symptoms of protein build-up (like dry or red eyes), talk to your optometrist about switching to daily lenses. You can also ask for a sample or recommendation of a hydrogen peroxide-based contact lens solution!