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Storage of contact lenses
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Christine Thuermer
(chgeth) - F

Locale: Germany
Storage of contact lenses on 05/11/2008 07:41:28 MDT Print View

I could not find a suitable forum for this question so I try G Spot:

I am extremely short sighted and cannot survive without glasses. Therefore I am always carrying a pair of soft 1-month contact lenses as a back-up for my glasses. So far I have always carried a container and some commercial storage liquid, too, but now I want to save the weight for that. But if I should really need to open the contact lenses and use them, in what should I store them at night? Water? Saliva?
As a container I could use the original lenses' container.
I do hope that this is not a too stupid question, but I am not wearing contacts regularily and don't have much experience with them.
Thank you for any info,

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Storage of contact lenses on 05/11/2008 08:08:58 MDT Print View

I wear contacts all the time. For overnighters and weekends I don't normally take them out. I just bring a small bottle of eye drops for the dryness and bring a spare set of lens in their original packaging.

If I ever plan to be out longer than that I bring the little case I store them in overnight at home. It really doesn't weigh all the much. With contact solution in it mine only weighs 12 g.

I would highly advise storing them in contact solution overnight and only use water as a last ditch effort.

My suggestion would be to avoid all the hassle and just bring the contact case with solution.


Edited by aroth87 on 05/11/2008 08:09:30 MDT.

Christine Thuermer
(chgeth) - F

Locale: Germany
Storage of contact lenses on 05/11/2008 08:15:50 MDT Print View

As I am not used to wearing contacts leaving them in overnight is not really an option.
I will next be hiking the AT were I am even in the worst case only a couple of days away from civilisation and a shop with storage solution... so I was wondering whether under these conditions water storage would be an option.
What is the problem with storing contacts in water anyway? Calcification? Because water might not be sterile? I just try to understand the problem...

Ian Luschin
(iluschin) - F

Locale: Ohio/PA
storage of contact lenses on 05/11/2008 08:44:58 MDT Print View

I wear contacts. I find that I can fit a two night supply of solution in one BPL mini-dropper bottle. Even two of these filled with solution does not weigh a lot and is pretty compact. I used water as a last resort once. I didn't really have a problem, but it was not very comfortable putting them in my eyes in the morning. That's just my experience, I don't know anything about calcification or anything. If you're only using the contacts for back-up, I would just carry a mini-dropper full of no-rub contact solution.

David Poston
(dgposton) - F

Locale: Texas / Colorado
Water doesn't work well as contact solution on 05/11/2008 09:20:54 MDT Print View

Water lacks the proper salinity required and whatever else is present in your natural tears. I have used water before (at home when I ran out of contact solution), and it was painful. If the contacts are for backup only, I would just bring the lenses in a case with solution. If for regular use (as I do), bring a small bottle of lens solution. I don't know how you can repackage contact solution, since the top doesn't screw off. Suggestions?

Charles Mason
(guesting) - F
lens on 05/11/2008 12:03:48 MDT Print View

Not all lenses can be worn over night. Make sure you use the right kind and ask. I stopped using sleep in lenses as they are not healthy and generally lenses stop the oxygenation of the cornea which can be damaging in the long term. So use glasses as often as you can, ie getting home etc. You can use small amounts of all-in-one solutions (cleans and stores over night) in the BPL products recommended above or just cannibalize an eye drop bottle or similar (eg: small lens cleaner bottles, can store contents elsewhere at home). Visit a drug store if you're in a hurry to get one. Saliva can be ok if you have to take them out or they just fell in some dirt and you don't have solutions on you. But before putting them back in they have to be cleaned (in water at least properly) as saliva contains many bacteria. Water makes them hard sticky and painful. Wash hands before contact or cleaning.

In general you might want to skip on a fraction of an ounce here or there which is funny when most are overweight. Being under weight or not eating properly generally and specially on the trail is worse and is similar to carrying a heavy load and being miserable on top. In all these cases you will ruin the quality of your days and nights and in this particular case could end up with an eye infection. For short sightedness specially in extreme cases Lasic laser correction which is about the cost of lenses/glasses over a decade is not a bad solution. That is if you are over thirty and the eyes haven't changed much and have stabilized, getting significantly better or worse, in the last few years. Although my eyes are not too bad, I'm looking into it soon.
I've realized a little common sense is usually the answer in almost all situations.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Storage of contact lenses on 05/11/2008 17:57:44 MDT Print View

An alternative solution which does not involve storing lenses after using them is to buy some daily wear lenses, which are designed to be worn only one day and then discarded, maybe 2 pairs, and discard the used pair at the end of each day. This avoids the hassles of carrying lens solution, storage container, saliva vs fresh water, etc. They weigh practically nothing, BTW. I've been using them in the backcountry for years and find them to be a very hassle free approach to contact lenses.

Shahrin Bin Shariff
(zzmelayu) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Table Mountain
Daily Wear on 05/12/2008 01:51:51 MDT Print View

I started using these 5 years ago and no longer have the hassle of storing fluid, cases, etc etc. I use BPL eye dropper to store some all-in-one liquid to use as eye-drops as and when is needed. P.S. This solution only applies on weekenders and short trips.

Edited by zzmelayu on 05/12/2008 01:53:45 MDT.

Jon Rhoderick
(hotrhoddudeguy) - F - M

Locale: New England
contact case on 05/12/2008 08:21:34 MDT Print View

use one of these
and a regular saline solution and you should be able to not carry extra for 1-2 weeks. I'm sure of the scientific sterility or health issues with not refreshing your solution but I've used this for about 2 years and not had any problems