There seems to be a barrage of information related to practically every aspect of our lives which may somehow be related to COVID-19. As expected, there are some opinions about Contact Lens use during the pandemic as well.
There are some conflicting news items, parts of which exaggerated by excited “news-makers”. We narrow down to opinions of four most important groups of authorities regarding the use of contact lenses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The British Contact Lens Association issued an advisory to consumers which says “There is no evidence to date that contact lens wear should be avoided by healthy individuals, or that contact lens wearers are more at risk for a coronavirus infection compared to those wearing spectacles.
There is currently no evidence to suggest any correlation between the usage of contact lenses and the spread of COVID-19 or a coronavirus infection related to contact lens use. To help maintain healthy contact lens wear all contact lenses wearers should follow correct lens wear and care instructions, as prescribed by you their Eye Care Professional. These will of course include following good hygiene practices and advice to avoid lens wear if the contact lens wearer is feeling unwell, in particular with any cold or flu-like symptoms. ”
- The American Optometric Association on its website says, “ Contact lens wear during COVID-19
As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, patients continue to look to doctors of optometry, their primary eye health care physicians, for accurate eye health and vision guidance. When it comes to contact lens wear, the American Optometric Association (AOA) and doctors of optometry want to reinforce that contact lenses are a safe and effective form of vision correction for millions of people.” “Healthy individuals can continue to wear and care for their contact lenses as prescribed by their doctor of optometry”.
- “It’s important to remember that although there is a lot of concern about coronavirus, common sense precautions can significantly reduce your risk of getting infected. So wash your hands a lot, follow good contact lens hygiene and avoid touching or rubbing your nose, mouth and especially your eyes,” says ophthalmologist Sonal Tuli, MD, a spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. She adds, “Consider wearing glasses more often, especially if you tend to touch your eyes a lot when your contacts are in.”
Three of the world’s most published researchers in eye health are responding to misinformation circulating regarding contact lens and spectacles/glasses wear amidst Novel Coronavirus / COVID-19 andemic.
Lyndon Jones, FIACLE and director of the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) at the University of Waterloo (Canada); Philip Morgan, IACLE Vice President and director of Eurolens Research at The University of Manchester (United Kingdom); and Jason Nichols, Associate Vice President Research
and Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry (United States) and editor in chief of Contact Lens Spectrum are advising eye care professionals and consumers to heed sound, evidence-based practices.
“Contact Lens Wear is Safe. Despite myths and misinformation that have arisen over the past 48 hours, contact lens wear remains a safe and highly effective form of vision correction for millions of people worldwide.”
Please note that all these are true as 11:00 AM (IST) of March, 30, 2020. However, given the evolving nature of the pandemic, these advisories may change with time.
Please check our guide to Best Practices for Contact Lens Wear. Its a 3 minute read. Please spare a few moments to review them for your own good.