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Smart Hygiene Habits to Care for Your Contact Lenses

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Swimming in a pool with your contacts on or topping off your solution may seem harmless, but they could compromise your contact lenses and your vision.

Below are daily habits to adopt for optimal contact lens care:

Wash Your Hands Regularly

Whether you use daily or monthly contact lenses, make sure to first wash your hands. Placing your finger on some clear tape and seeing the mark you leave will give you some indication of what you’re putting on your contact lenses if you don’t wash and dry your hands beforehand. Avoid using scented or oily soaps, as their residue might stick to the lens surface. Similarly, avoid creams and lotions prior to inserting contacts into your eyes. 

This one simple and easy habit can make a massive difference in your eye health and can potentially prevent eye irritation and infections. 

Clean Your Contacts Daily

You must clean and disinfect your contact lenses on a daily basis, unless you use daily disposables, of course. There are several cleansing systems and solutions available — the choice depends on the type of lens you use. Speak with R. L. Rodriguez to determine the best cleaning solution for your lenses and eyes.

Avoid Contact with Water

It might seem harmless, but we advise against using tap water, as it contains impurities and microorganisms that can cause infections. Furthermore, tap water can lead your contacts to swell and change their shape. If you must swim with your contact lenses on, make sure to wear protective goggles and clean them with solution when you come out of the pool.

Never Ever Use Saliva 

Your mouth is filled with germs, which are fine for your teeth but not for your eyes. Avoid using saliva to “clean” or moisten your contact lenses.  

Do Not Top off Solution

Just as you shouldn’t mix spoiled food with fresh foods, you should not top off yesterday’s solution in your contact lens case with fresh solution. The concoction might not contain enough disinfectant to kill off organisms and clean your lenses. 

Routinely Change the Contact Lens Case

Many people don’t know about this one, but it’s recommended to change your contact lens case every 2-3 months, as microscopic dirt may linger in the case, leading to contamination and eye infections. 

Don’t Sleep with Your Lenses On

It’s important to give your cornea a chance to breathe; sleeping with your contacts may cause redness, soreness and infections. So make sure to remove your contact lenses before you get some shut-eye, unless they’re specialty lenses which are intended to be worn overnight. 

If you’re using orthokeratology (ortho-k) lenses to reshape your cornea, do wear them at night or as instructed by your eye doctor. 

Get That Annual Eye Exam

Don’t forget to book your yearly eye exam at Dr. Rodolfo L. Rodriguez, O.D., P.A. in North Bergen, as your vision can change. You can’t purchase new contact lenses with an expired prescription anyway, so you’ll need an updated one when your contact lens supply is running low. Furthermore, getting an exam is also an excellent opportunity to ask R. L. Rodriguez any questions you may have.

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As the COVID-19 crisis develops, I am on-call to treat urgent, need to be seen in person patients only. Eye doctors have gotten the green light to attend to patient’s urgent needs via telemedicine, phone or video chat (face-time type of technology) that permits to talk to the patient and/or to virtually see you and take care of your eye issues, answer questions and to prescribe or refill medications from your home, as we practice shelter-in-place. Insurance have accepted telemedicine charges while we are in this state of emergency. As primary eye care provider we are focused on the health of our patients, our practice remains at the frontline providing essential eyecare. urgent and emergency eyecare to our patients in an effort to alleviate burdens on emergency departments. We are actively monitoring and updating these procedures as the pandemic evolves and new recommendations are issued.

We continue to maintain hygiene and infection control protocols as usual.

NOTICE:

If you returned from outside the US or visited an area defined by the CDC as an area of high risk IN THE LAST 14 DAYS, OR

If you had direct contact with an individual with confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) IN THE LAST 14 DAYS, OR,

If you had direct contact with a person who is currently being quarantined for coronavirus (COVID-19) exposure IN THE LAST 14 DAYS, OR,

If you felt feverish, have difficulty breathing and had a cough in the last 24 hours, please note that you will not be given an in-person appointment.

We are prioritizing in-person examinations only to those that are suspected to be medically urgent or time sensitive and established patients who require in-person ongoing care to prevent vision loss or those who indicate that that they are having injuries or urgent eye care needs. We are rescheduling patients that have non-urgent conditions. Please call my cell phone only for true emergencies: 201-370-1142.

Steps you can take to prevent spread of flu and the common cold will also help prevent COVID-19 (coronavirus):

•Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.

•Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

•Avoid contact with people who are sick.

•Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

•Avoid close contact, distance yourself and others, especially important for those who are at higher risk of getting sick to avoid contacting others.

•Strongly recommended that people remain in their homes. Must stay home if you are sick, except to get essential medical care.

•Keep hydrated. You don’t need to wear a facemask unless you are caring for someone who is sick (and they are not able to wear a facemask). Facemasks are in short supply and should be save for caregivers. If you are sick, you should wear a facemask when around other people. COVID-19 is particularly serious for the elderly and those immune suppress but can be serious for anyone.

Wishing everyone good health!