A study conducted by Bausch & Lomb in August showed that many adults are using dangerous lubricants instead of contact lens solution to keep their lenses moist. Everything from baby oil, to fruit juice to petroleum jelly was reportedly used as a substitute to proper contact lens solution by one eighth of the 2,000 adults that responded in the survey conducted in the UK.
A larger number of the respondants indicated that they use spit when putting lenses in their eyes. Knowing that the average adult mouth is known to house hundreds of different types of microorganisms, this can pose a serious health risk to your eyes. Further, many people believe that water from a tap or bottle is a suitable replacement for lens solution, however even those can contain parasites that can cause eye damage and have been associated with Acanthamoeba keratitis, a sight-threatening corneal infection. Even moreso, if water enters your eyes from a pool, ocean or even a bath while your lenses are in, it's a good idea to take out your lenses as soon as you can and thoroughly rinse them to rinse away any parasites that may have stuck to them.
Disinfecting your contact lenses is critical and only properly labeled contact lens solution should be used. Don't ever keep your lenses in water! Storing your contact lenses in water isn't effective in sterilizing them and harmful pathogens can gather on your lenses almost instantly and eventually enter your eyes. Additionally, lens solution is balanced to compliment the saltiness of your tears and conversely water can cause a reaction which makes your contacts change shape or stick causing discomfort and blurred vision.
At times that adequate care is not possible for you, you should definitely use one-use contact lenses instead of lenses that you reuse. You should always take age, way of life and level of maturity into consideration when deciding which contact lens options are most suitable for the members of your family.
Don't forget failure to properly care for your contacts with approved lens solution can result in severe damage to the eyes, vision loss and even blindness!