Bad Contact Lens Hygiene

Decent Essays
With a large variety of systems in the human body, diseases that affect vital organs such as the heart, lungs, and brain are often at the top of the concern list and made more aware in regards to public health measures and daily lifestyles. While many of the diseases that affect these organs are life threatening and could impair a person’s life in dramatic ways, we cannot let them take all the spot light from other essential organs. An organ that people do not focus on and donate the proper time and care to is the human eye. This small but important organ that every human uses on a daily basis for all activities has seen an increase in infections due to poor hygiene. With almost all eye infections being preventable by avoiding behaviors that…show more content…
However, behaviors such as topping off solution and swimming with contacts in are examples of bad contact lens hygiene. While it is difficult to determine the percentage of Americans who practice bad contact lens hygiene, it is easy to identify the amount of eye infections recorded and relate each case to how an individual cares for his or her contacts. In 2015, 40.9 million adults were estimated to wear contacts according to the Centers for Disease Control. While just simply wearing contacts makes an individual 10 times more likely to contract an eye infection (Reddy), unhealthy contact hygiene can increase this likelihood severely. Eye infections in the United States have increased since the 1980’s and between 1980 and 1988, 85% of bacterial eye infection cases that were reported, all involved contact lenses (Joslin, et., 169). Even though contacts and contact products have improved and the chances of these products contracting microorganisms is lower than before, people who participate in unhealthy contact lens behavior increase their chances of developing infections just as equally as people did in 1980 (Joslin, et.,…show more content…
These organisms use a person’s contact lens to enter the eye and then embed into the cornea where a painful and visually impairing ulcer is created. Acanthamoeba keratitis is a bacterium that is becoming more prevalent in the United States, with the largest contributing factor to this infection being contact lens use. This infection is also proving to be difficult to diagnose and treat. If untreated or detected late, this bacterium can cause permanent scarring and blindness. According to Dr. Elmer Tu, of eye infection cases involving Acanthamoeba keratitis 1-3% do result in blindness and 10-20% need corneal transplants (Reddy). Acanthamoeba keratitis can be found in various types of water, including tap, costal, bottled mineral water, or sewage. This bacteria is also found in contact solution, dust, and soil (Gupta, et., 70), so the likelihood of contracting this bacterium is easy and the chances are even higher with when individuals choose to participate in unhealthy contact lens
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