Common contact mistakes that could lead to blindness
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS) —
Over three million teens wear contacts.
While they're convenient, they can lead to serious complications.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 85 percent of contact wearers don't take proper care of their lenses.
"It can lead to serious infections, you can have conjunctivitis, you can have a corneal ulcer and you can have any bacterial infections as well," said Siby Francis, an optometrist at All About Eyes.
Some of the infections could have life-altering results.
"Some of the infections can cause scars and if the scar is in the regional axis, it can cause serious blindness," said Francis.
The CDC said the most common mistakes contact wearers make are not visiting an eye doctor once a year, swimming in contacts, and sleeping in them.
“The longer you sleep in your contacts, the higher the chance of you getting a corneal infection, nine times higher actually," explained Francis.
Justin Fox, a 12-year-old contact wearer, made the switch from glasses to lenses last year.
He said he works diligently to ensure they’re always clean.
"I always take them out and clean them thoroughly and then rinse them and that usually does it," said Fox.
Local eye doctors said cleaning your contacts is key to avoiding an infection.
They also advise people to always wash their hands before touching their eye, using new contact solution every time lenses are cleaned, and replacing the contact case regularly.