A study conducted by Bausch & Lomb in August revealed that many people are using dangerous chemicals in place of contact solution to keep their lenses moist. Substances such as baby oil, beer, coke, petroleum jelly, fruit juices, butter and others were all listed as occasional substitutes, by 20% of the two thousand adults that responded in the survey conducted in the UK.
Even more of those surveyed reported that they have used saliva when inserting their contacts. Considering we know that the mouth of the average adult is known to be the home of 500 to 650 varieties of bacteria, this is clearly not a good idea. To worsen the situation, far too many individuals presume that tap water, bottled water or distilled water are a safe alternative for contact solution, however even pure bottled water or distilled water may contain microorganisms that can cause eye damage and have been linked to Acanthamoeba keratitis, an infection that could lead to blindness. Even moreso, if water enters your eyes from a pool, ocean or even a bath while wearing your contacts, it's advised to take out your contacts as soon as possible and thoroughly rinse them to rinse away any parasites that may have stuck to them.
Disinfecting your contact lenses is an absolute and only properly labeled lens disinfectants should be used. Don't ever store your lenses in water! Storing your lenses in water does not sterilize them and harmful pathogens can grow on your contacts almost instantly and enter your eyes once you put them in. Additionally, lens solution is balanced to compliment the saltiness of your tears and water on the other hand can cause a reaction which makes your contacts change shape or stick causing discomfort and blurred vision.
When adequate care is not possible for you, you should definitely try to use daily disposable lenses rather than lenses that you reuse. Be sure to take into consideration your daily routine when you are choosing between daily disposables and reusable contacts.
Only those who are capable of understanding the proper way to care for contacts and how important this is should wear contacts, especially reusable brands. Failure to do so can result in permanent harm, loss of vision and even total blindness!