Sleep and contact lenses are a bad combination

, medical expert
Last reviewed: 25.02.2021

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29 October 2020, 09:00

Returning home late or being tired is not a reason to sleep without removing your contact lenses. Such negligence can result in serious consequences for vision.

A person who first puts on contact lenses is very careful about wearing them at first. However, as practice shows, after a certain period of time, addiction develops, people relax and stop following some medical recommendations. Statistics show that about 30% of contact lens wearers periodically allow themselves not to take them off before going to bed.

The American Center for Disease Control and Prevention provided the following information: patients who ignore the rules and sleep with corrective agents more than five nights a week often get eye infections.

"Sleeping with lenses is a clear increase in the risk of corneal infections, which, unfortunately, is often found among adolescent and middle-aged patients," said representatives of the Center.

In particular, we are talking about the development of microbial keratitis - an infectious pathology that requires antibiotic therapy. Untreated with powerful drugs, extremely adverse complications can occur.

Experts cited examples of individual cases from practice, when the presence of lenses during sleep over time led to dangerous lesions of the cornea, the need for surgical intervention and even loss of visual function.

So, one of the patients was a 34-year-old man. He regularly went to bed without removing his devices, and even swam with them in the pool, which led to the accumulation of dangerous pathogenic flora in the cornea. After a while, he had to go to the doctor, as he was worried about a strange cloudiness in the eye on the left side. The doctor had to treat a mixed inflammatory microbial-fungal process for a long time, but even a powerful treatment did not bring results. As it turned out, it was an acanthamoebic form of keratitis caused by a rare infectious agent - amoeba. As a result, the sight returned to the man, but not completely.

In another case, it was about a 17-year-old girl who rarely took off her soft lenses and was eventually diagnosed with pseudomonas keratitis. The infectious process was cured, but after it irreversible cicatricial changes remained, and vision deteriorated markedly.

The third patient, a 59-year-old man, decided to go hunting for several days. It took only two days of continuous wearing of the products for the development of an infectious perforated corneal ulcer. As a result, a serious and expensive corneal transplant operation had to be performed, followed by a long recovery period.

Perhaps we are not talking about the most typical cases. However, no one can guarantee that any infectious process will not begin after improper wearing of lenses. Doctors warn: sleep and lenses are incompatible concepts.

Information is presented on the website www.fda.gov

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