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Are there risks to wearing contact lenses?

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Contact lenses are a convenient and comfortable alternative to eyeglasses for many people. However, you can't wear them all the time -- and if you don't clean and care for them correctly, you're more likely to get eye infections.

People who wear contact lenses have a higher risk for keratitis, an infection of the cornea, the clear outer covering of your eye. They're also called corneal ulcers. Viruses, bacteria, fungi, and a rare but serious eye parasite can cause keratitis.

SOURCES:

American Academy of Ophthalmology: "Contact Lens-Related Eye Infections," "What Is Bacterial Keratitis?" "Conjunctivitis: What Is Pink Eye?"

Cleveland Clinic: "Conjunctivitis," "Avoid These Eye Infections from Bad Contact Lens Habits."

FDA: "Contact Lens Risks."

University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center: "Allergies of the Eye."

CDC: "Staphylococcus aureus in Healthcare Settings," "Fungal Eye Infection Statistics," "Treatment for Fungal Eye Infections."

American Optometric Association: "Conjunctivitis," "Bacterial Eye Infection Treatment," "Contact Lens-Related Eye Infections," "What Is Bacterial Keratitis?" "What is Fungal Keratitis?"

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "Keratitis (Corneal Ulcers)."

All About Vision: "Acanthamoeba Keratitis: What Contact Lens Wearers Need To Know."

Reviewed by Brian S. Boxer Wachler on November 10, 2017

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

SOURCES:

American Academy of Ophthalmology: "Contact Lens-Related Eye Infections," "What Is Bacterial Keratitis?" "Conjunctivitis: What Is Pink Eye?"

Cleveland Clinic: "Conjunctivitis," "Avoid These Eye Infections from Bad Contact Lens Habits."

FDA: "Contact Lens Risks."

University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center: "Allergies of the Eye."

CDC: "Staphylococcus aureus in Healthcare Settings," "Fungal Eye Infection Statistics," "Treatment for Fungal Eye Infections."

American Optometric Association: "Conjunctivitis," "Bacterial Eye Infection Treatment," "Contact Lens-Related Eye Infections," "What Is Bacterial Keratitis?" "What is Fungal Keratitis?"

Johns Hopkins Medicine: "Keratitis (Corneal Ulcers)."

All About Vision: "Acanthamoeba Keratitis: What Contact Lens Wearers Need To Know."

Reviewed by Brian S. Boxer Wachler on November 10, 2017

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.

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