Can I Wear My Contact Lenses During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

April 2, 2020

Are you worried about wearing contact lenses during the current COVID-19 pandemic? We’ve gathered some studies, guidelines and recommendations which show that you can continue to wear your contact lenses Calgary during the outbreak of this virus, and that it’s safe to do so.



Are you experiencing an eye emergency or require urgent eye care? My Optometrist Calgary is still here to help during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Helping You See Through COVID-19


Facts, not myths:

You may have seen countless social media reports giving conflicting interpretations of the safety of contact lens wear and coronavirus exposure. A joint statement by researchers in Canada (Lyndon Jones, University of Waterloo), the United Kingdom (Philip Morgan, University of Manchester), and the United States (Jason Nichols, Contact Lens Spectrum) summarized that wearing contact lenses is safe, so long as you engage in proper hand washing techniques and follow prescribed disinfection routines. They also recommend disinfecting your glasses as they too come in contact with your face, and do so more often than the one time a day inserting your contact lenses entails. In fact, eyeglasses are not a proven protection against COVID-19 virus transmission.
 
Initial ophthalmology studies in the US have already started a small case study of active COVID-19 positive contact lens wearers. According to this study, published in the March 2020 edition of Ophthalmology on COVID-19 patients, it found no evidence of the virus in tear samples collected from 17 patients from day 3 to day 20 of active symptoms.
 
The safety of wearing contact lenses has been studied for decades, and these early results of COVID-19 contact lens wearers is encouraging. There is no scientific evidence that contact lens wear is problematic during this pandemic. It is certainly time to reinforce rigorous hygiene protocols with contact lens wear though. Without further evidence to the contrary, the American Academy of Optometry (AAO) believes that contact lenses can still be safely worn as long as people follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) guidance on hand washing, as well as their optometrist’s strict contact lens hygiene protocols.


Our conclusion: Can I wear my contact lenses during the COVID pandemic?

Yes, you can!

There is no evidence that there is any increased exposure to the COVID-19 virus through the wearing of contact lenses.
 
Of course, if you are actively unwell, contact lenses should not be worn at that time. Your immune system is suppressed, your tear chemistry is altered, and ultimately you can be more prone to discomfort or eye infections.
 
Of special note: IF you work in a high-risk medical capacity, then it is advised you wear glasses, or even full-face protective gear, and avoid wearing contact lenses in this environment.
 
Need contact lens fitting Calgary? Our Telehealth service during the COVID-19 pandemic is here to help!

Helping You See Through COVID-19


What can I do to ensure my contact lenses continue to be safe to wear?

Contact lens wear can remain safe – provided you are following all the appropriate cleaning and handling protocols.

Please contact our clinic to order your next supply of contact lenses. We will evaluate your contact history, and are postponing the normally necessary annual vision and eye health examination due to the COVID-19 limitations on receiving an eye exam in Calgary at this time. It is even possible for us to review if a daily version of your prescription is available.

 

Helping You See Through COVID-19

We can arrange direct delivery or private storefront pick up depending on your prescription needs.
We look forward to seeing you at the office once this outbreak subsides and we are able to provide complete services again.

The team at My Optometrist Calgary

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