Eye Health

Is it Contact Lens Solution Toxicity

The issue of contact lens solution toxicity occurs because contact lens users generally do not pay the requisite attention to two things. One is matching the solution with the specific brand and type of lenses. The other is matching the solution to the specific characteristics of their eyes.

The Background of the Issue

Considering the fact that contact lens solutions form an over-the-counter product, all sorts of manufacturers are in the market to grab market share. Due to this they do not pay as much attention to marking product labels with important precautions to facilitate correct selection and safe usage by contact lens users.

The issue is compounded because most contact lens users themselves are not aware of the pitfalls associated with using the wrong combination of contact lenses and the solution used to maintain them. As a result, many find themselves on a visit to their eye doctor with complaints of all sorts of issues related with their eyes.

Understanding Contact lens solution toxicity

Contact lens solution toxicity is a serious issue and can cause various different complications in eyes. When use of an incompatible contact lens solution causes an unwanted reaction in the eyes of an unsuspecting user, it is termed as Contact lens solution toxicity. Usually, the reaction may simply be due to inflammation of the eyes and is non-infectious.

Sometimes infrequently, if the requisite precautions have not been used, it can result into infection in the eyes and this can cause pain and burning sensation to the victim's eyes. Some patients complain of gradually clouded vision while most of them complain about a foreign body effect in their eyes. Some even go to the extent of blaming their contact lenses for the ills.

A preservative such as thimerosal used in a saline solution can cause an allergic reaction in sensitive eyes. Sometimes, the issue arises if after disinfection of contact lenses by hydrogen peroxide, a neutralizing agent has not been used and the lenses have not been rinsed and stored in a preservative-free saline solution before reinsertion in eyes.

Hydrogen peroxide solution used to disinfect contact lenses is quite corrosive. If it enters the eyes, reddening, burning, and itching of the eyes follows. It is definitely toxic for the eyes.

Contact lens solution can be toxic for eyes to different degrees because of other reasons too. If the eyes are drying up because of constant prolonged contact lens use and the individual concerned has not used the proper rewetting agent, it can result in a foreign body effect in that person's eyes. The user would not feel comfortable wearing the contacts. Sometimes, a user's contact lenses or his/her eyes may get stained because he/she has used an incompatible eye drop or rewetting agent.

How to Prevent Toxicity

Proper education of contact lens users in regard to the procedure for selection of lens care solutions will go a long way to stop toxicity in their eyes occurring because of use of mismatched products. Another thing to prevent toxicity is to use all requisite recommended precautions and to follow the advice of a qualified eye specialist for all of this.