Five facts: Contact lenses, glasses and COVID-19

It’s a common question: Can I wear my contact lenses during the COVID-19 pandemic?  New research led by the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE), based in the US, is dispelling coronavirus myths. Dr Lyndon Jones, CORE’s director and the world’s most-published expert in contact lens research, offers these valuable tips for healthy vision.

1. You can keep wearing contact lenses
There is currently no scientific evidence that contact lens wearers have an increased risk of contracting COVID-19 compared with glasses wearers. As always, you should consult your own eye doctor with any specific questions.

2. Good hygiene habits are critical
Thorough handwashing and drying are essential. Properly wear and care for your contact lenses, making sure you practice good contact-lens-case hygiene. Also, regularly clean your glasses with soap and water. These habits can help you stay healthy and out of your doctor’s office or the hospital.

3. Regular eyeglasses do not provide protection
There is no scientific evidence to support rumours that everyday glasses offer protection against COVID-19.

4. Keep unwashed hands away from your face Whether you wear contact lenses, glasses or require no vision correction at all, you should avoid touching your nose, mouth and eyes with unwashed hands. This is consistent with World Health Organization recommendations.

5. If you are sick, temporarily stop wearing contact lenses
If you are ill, temporarily stop wearing your contacts and use your glasses instead. Once you return to full health and have spoken with your eye doctor, you can start again. Make sure to use new contact lenses and a new lens case.

“Our findings indicate that contact lenses remain a perfectly acceptable form of vision correction during the coronavirus pandemic. People need to remember to practice good hand hygiene and follow appropriate wear-and-care directions, as instructed by their eye doctor,” says Dr. Jones. There has been considerable misinformation circulating about wearing contact lenses and glasses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal is to make sure that science-backed truths are understood and shared, replacing fear with fact.-NewsUSA