Can You Swim with Contact Lenses?

If you wear Contact lenses regularly, you would want to wear them even when you go swimming. Most people think their contacts can make them see well when swimming. While seeing properly can be beneficial, there are some things you should know about contacts and wearing them underwater. When contacts become wet, with any type of water – from the pool, shower, or lake, it increases the risk of various eye problems. This guide answers your question of whether you should swim with your contacts.

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Risks of Swimming with Your Contact lenses On

Exposure to any form of water should be avoided when you wear contacts. Swimming in the lenses can be especially full of risk. Lenses work by absorbing water. In this case, they will absorb the pool water, and trap bacteria and other pathogens. Swimming in a lake or river can be even more hazardous than in a pool. These water bodies contain a larger variety of pathogens that would otherwise be killed by pool chemicals. But that doesn’t make it any safer to jump into a pool with your contacts on.

Soft bausch and lomb Contact lenses are especially porous and can house both pathogens and chemicals from the pool that can eventually come in contact with your eye.

When you wear contacts in a pool, it increases the risk of developing the following issues:

  • Dry eye syndrome
  • Eye irritation
  • Eye infections
  • Eye inflammation
  • Corneal abrasion
  • Corneal ulcers

Symptoms of Eye Infection

If your lenses get wet, you should lookout for any signs of eye infection. Some of the common symptoms are as follows:

  • Red eyes
  • Swelling
  • Itchy eyes
  • Eye pain
  • Blurry vision
  • Excessively watery, teary eyes
  • Eye discharge
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensation of having something in your eye

If you suffer from any of these symptoms, make sure to see an eye doctor. Earlier intervention can help prevent any damage to your eyes.

Tips for Swimming

If you must swim with your contacts, it is recommended to take these precautions:

  • Wear tight-fitting goggles
  • Remove your contacts right after you get out of the pool
  • Make sure the lenses are disinfected for 24 hours
  • It will be better to wear daily contacts and dispose them of after swimming
  • Put your eye drops before and after to reduce the risk of dry eyes

Contact Lenses & Showering

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The only type of fluid that should come in contact with your lenses is the sterile contact lens solution. You shouldn’t allow any form of water to get into your eyes when you have the lenses. When you take a shower with your contacts on, it can be as risky as swimming with them. It will also increase your risk of getting eye infections, dry eyes, or inflammation.

Acanthamoeba is a commonly found amoeba in tap water. When it comes in contact with your eye, it can cause a condition known as Acanthamoeba keratitis that can be painful and hard to treat. It is always recommended to avoid wearing contacts when taking a shower.

So, make sure to keep all these points in mind if you think of swimming with your Contact lenses on. It is best to avoid wearing them when getting into the water. If you cannot swim without your lenses, make sure to follow the precautionary tips mentioned above.

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