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How to Travel with your Glasses and Contacts

June 25, 2015

Here at OCLI, I love to travel and have been all over the world exploring different people and their cultures. I imagine that many of my patients also like to travel, which is a great thing to have in common with them. I love to hear about adventures they’ve returned from or the destinations they’re setting off for in the future. One thing I’m always concerned about though, is that they’re taking care of their eye health while they’re enjoying their vacation. Here are eye care tips during travel you should consider, to take care of your eyes and their lenses

Pack Your Own Contact Solution

We all have a favorite brand of contact solution that we prefer to use. Many airlines have a standard allowance of about 3 FL of liquid on a flight. If you know you are traveling overseas where you may not be able to find the brand of solution you like at a local pharmacy then pack contact solution in your carry on bag. If you’re traveling within the states or to a place you know has a well-stocked pharmacy, then plan to buy a larger container of the solution when you arrive at your destination.

Pack An Extra Pair of Glasses

It’s easy to say you’ll be fine with one pair, but if you have access to an extra pair of glasses, bring them along with you. Nothing ruins a vacation trip like losing the ability to see properly! I recommend storing them in a hard cover case and keeping them on your person in your carry on, in case a mishap happens before you get your luggage.

store your glasses in your phone

Carry your readers on your phone!

Thin Optics makes a reading glass that fits on your cell phone. I love mine! They have been flying of the shelves since we introduced them in our optical department 2 months ago.

Bring Hand Sanitizer

When you use contacts, one of the first things we teach is to wash your hands with soap and water before putting them in or taking them out of your eyes. This is because many different bacteria can get into your eyes via your hands and it makes it easier to contract an infection.

That said, it’s not always practical to assume you’ll be able to wash your hands with soap and water before handling your contacts, especially if you’re a more adventurous traveler and in a place will less that desirable facilities or even out in the wilderness. Because of this, we recommend carrying a bottle of hand sanitizer with you to cleanse your hands when a sink and soap aren’t accessible.

Take Your Contacts Out Before Swimming or Showering

Some places abroad, while beautiful indeed, don’t always have sanitary water that is safe to drink. If you’re in a place like this, we recommend that if you don’t have hand sanitizer (which we hope you’ll take under advisement to carry with you like we suggested), wash your hands with bottled water. We also recommend taking out your contacts before showering at facilities that don’t have sanitary drinking water. Doing so could introduce bacteria into your eyes that otherwise wouldn’t get in them if you were showering with different water.

A lot of vacations, if in a warmer climate, involve swimming. Whether it’s in chlorinated water like a pool, a lake, or an ocean, we recommend taking out your contact before jumping in the deep end. We recommend this for the same reason we recommend taking out your contacts before showering—because bacteria can be easily introduced.

Bring Supplies You’ll Need

Most people know to bring contact solution with them when they leave, but what else is a good idea? We recommend bringing a lens cleaning cloth if you wear glasses and also a small screwdriver to tighten loose screws in case you need to secure your glasses while you’re on your trip.

Bring a Copy of Your Prescription 

No matter what precautions we take when traveling, accidents happen. It’s always a good idea to bring both your glasses and contacts prescriptions with you when you travel in case you need a new set of either. If this happens, acquiring the new sets in a different, strange place will be much easier.

See Your Eye Doctor

Most people don’t think about seeing their eye doctor before traveling, but it’s always a good idea to schedule a trip to the doctor’s before you head out of town. Seeing your eye doctor will ensure that you have the right prescription and your eyesight hasn’t changed since your last visit, and that you’re prepared to go on your trip. This is the perfect time to ask your doctor about any questions you have pertaining to travel, whether it’s about what to bring or even the location where you’re going—you never know, we might have been there!

You you’re going on a trip soon and interested in learning more about how to care for your eyes on your trip, feel free to get in touch today for a free consultation. If you’re generally interested in eye health and want to know more, feel free to peruse our blog!

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