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Swimming in
Contact Lenses

Recent news items have highlighted some risk of eye infection from swimming in contact lenses.

The problem is from a bug called Acanthamoeba that is present in tap and swimming pool water that isnt killed by chlorine instead forming a cyst.  Potentially the bug is a threat to everyone whether they wear lenses or not. The risk is however greater for lens wearers as the bug needs a way into the eye through a break in the epithelium and contact lens wearers often have a mild abrasion or sub acute corneal damage that provides this break and entry route.

Add in the fact that if you swim in the lenses the water can get behind the lens and hold the bug in contact with the eye so maximising exposure.

Ways to prevent infection:

  • Don’t swim in lenses, wear prescription swimming goggles instead. We have a range in stock costing £39.
  • Wear watertight goggles over the lenses.
  • Remove lenses after swimming and rub and rinse them to remove any bugs.
  • Wear dailies for swimming and throw away afterwards.

There is also a risk from tap water contamination and ways to prevent this are:

  • Avoid tap water coming into contact with your lenses and case. Rinse fingers with lens solution prior to handling them and clean lens case with lens solution, then leave to air dry after putting lenses in eyes.
  • Change your case every month to prevent a bio-film build up that the acanthamoeba can live on.

And never be tempted to continue wearing your lenses if you have any signs of an infection, red eye or pain but contact us for a check up. If in doubt, take it out.


Simply email with a preferred time and day and we will get back to you with some options.