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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration advises contact-lens wearers to rub (and rinse) their contacts clean. This policy, supported by the American Optometric Association, applies to all contacts, even those advertised as “no rub.” The FDA also advises that contact-lens wearers throw out cleansers after their expiration date, wash their hands before handling lenses, and allow their lens-storage cases to dry when not in use. Moreover, lenses should never be cleaned with non-sterile water (including tap water), bottled water, water from lakes and oceans, or homemade saline solution. These recommendations followed an outbreak in fungal infections in 2006 and an outbreak of amoeba infections in 2007. The FDA recalled two products after those outbreaks and remains vigilant about preventing others. The FDA lens-rubbing recommendation is made on the basis that simple rubbing of contacts removes more debris than mere rinsing.

Wearing contact lenses is different from wearing eyeglasses because the lenses are worn directly on the eyes.  Adherence to a prescribed wearing, cleaning, and replacement schedule is important.


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