We have talked about eco-friendly eye products in the past, such as these environmentally friendly sunglasses. However, it is also important to also be aware of the environmental impact of regular eyecare products like contact lenses.
Most of us want to live more sustainable lives. Unfortunately, it is becoming clear that many of us aren’t taking the steps needed to do so. Seventy-seven percent of people want to live how to lead greener lives, but they often need to do do more than they were expecting. We have to think about various things that we do that affect the environment, which includes wearing contact lenses.
What is Impact Do Contact Lenses Have on the Planet?
Scientific America published a daunting article on the environmental hazards of contact lenses. As author Keridwen Cornelius stated, contact lenses are a surprising source of pollution.
Over 2.6 billion contact lenses are flushed down the drain every year in the United States alone. These contact lenses often break down into microplastics and are mistaken as food by fish and other marine life.
They can also end up bleaching into the soil when they end up in landfills. While an individual contact lens might not take up much space, hundreds of millions of them a year all add up.
If you want to be an eco-friendly contact lens user, it is better to clean and reuse them. You will need to know how to clean them in the most environmentally friendly way possible, while still properly disinfecting them.
Eco-Friendly Contact Lens Owners Need to Know How to Clean them
Lens care is important and essential. It can also feel daunting at first, especially if you’re a new user. However, some tips and tricks can help you learn quickly. If you do not care for your contacts, they might lead to eye infections, which include blindness.
As times have changed, it is also true that lens care is now easier than ever. Disposable contact lenses and one-bottle care systems are great for giving care to your lenses. They are cost-effective, have less trouble, and get the task done effectively. However, the disposable ones aren’t good for the environment and are costlier over time.
It is also important to know that one should not switch between lens care routines without consulting their doctor first. See here for more information on how to clean contact lenses. This is a step-by-step guide on how contacts can be cleaned, maintained, and disinfected.
The Basics of Cleaning Soft Contact Lenses in the Most Eco-Friendly Way Possible
You will want to follow these steps to clean your contact lenses in a way that doesn’t harm the planet.
- Begin with the cleaning of the contacts with a multipurpose solution. Do so by placing the lens in the palm of your hand. You will want to find the eco-friendliest lens cleaner available. Clear Conscience and Menicon’s Miru 1 Day are two environmentally friendly contact lens cleaners on the market. Put ample amounts of solution and then gently rub the lens against the palm using your pointer finger. Do not make use of a circular motion, but use a back-and-forth movement.
- Make sure to wash your hands before you touch the contacts so that no dirt or germs are transferred to the eye. Do not make use of moisturizing soaps on your lenses.
- According to FDA, it is best to make use of only a few drops of solution, even if the product is a ‘no-rub’ one.
- Rinse the lens to remove any loosened dirt and debris. Rinse as long as needed.
- Place the cleaned lens in the lens case and now fill it with fresh solution. Repeat these steps for all of your other contacts.
There’s More Than Cleaning, Rinsing, and Disinfecting
Lens care can sometimes go beyond simple cleaning, rinsing, and disinfecting. Your doctor might suggest you use a product for protein removal. Some people have greater protein eye deposits on their contacts.
This can also depend upon the type of lens one is using. Cleaning them does help remove protein debris, but it can still get built up after being worn for a long time. The longer you wear them, the more likely it is that you will need a protein remover.
Eye Irritation and Dryness
Contact lens eye drops can be made use of for eye irritation and dryness purposes. Lubricate your eyes with these drops and re-wet them from time to time. Keeping your lenses wet and lubricated will greatly reduce any presence of eye dryness and irritation.
Eye Allergies and Sensitivity
Some people have severe eye allergies and eye sensitivity. There might be some people who develop an eye allergy due to the chemical composition of the solution. If this is the case with you, then you do not require any additional product. You will have to switch to preservative-free products.
Cleaning and maintenance of lenses can be confusing and daunting at first. But, as you go by it, it becomes easier. Follow these tips and get perfectly cleaned and disinfected contacts at all times.
Clean and Reuse Contact Lenses as an Eco-friendly Consumer
There are a lot of things that you have to do when you are trying to live a green lifestyle. You need to avoid wasting contact lenses, because they can kill fish when they turn into microplastics. A better option is to clean and reuse them. The right eco-friendly cleaning products can help.
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