Spring cleaning time!

It's spring!

Time to go through all our dry eye and scleral lens gear and

  • clean your durable products
  • discard expired items or items past their "use within ___ after opening"
  • replace soiled and worn items
  • keep an eye out for suspicious or recalled brands

Dry Eye Spring Cleaning

1. Discard expired eye drops

Find them, and out they go! Over-the-counter, prescription, cheap, expensive, opened, still sealed, whatever, if they're expired, it's a great time to purge them. Night stand, bathroom, car, purse, backpack, suitcase outer pocket, pockets of old coats and jackets, wherever they are, track them down and throw them away. Most eye drops are dated for 2 years from the date of manufacture, but they don’t reach retail stores immediately, and some brands have such infrequent production runs that they may be sold to you relatively close to their expiration date.

2. Discard eye drops that have been open too long

Remember, most of those special preservative-free multi-dose bottles need to be discarded with 90 days of opening. If you’re not sure, look it up online or shoot us an email to find the instructions for your brand/product. When you open that type of bottle, it's a good idea to use a marker to put the date on it. And please, if you find preservative-free eye drop single use vials sitting around that have been re-capped and you’re not sure when, do yourself a favor and discard them. Preservative-free eye drops are vulnerable to contamination, and the news cycle is reminding is more and more frequently now that eyedrops should be assumed to be harmless. Speaking of which:

3. Discard suspicious or recalled eye drops

RESOURCE: eyedropsafety.org

While you’re checking expirations, check also for suspicious names.  Check eyedropsafety.org for others. 

4. Discard expired lid care products

Yes, those lid scrubs - pads, wipes, foams, gels, and so on - they really do have expirations. If it’s liquid, it has an expiration. It’s not milk - it was probably dated for two to three years after the manufacture date - but it expires. So toss it. -

Hypochlorous cleansers (such as Avenova and Hypochlor) also have limited efficacy once opened so check instructions for each of those.

5. Clean or replace shields in your dry eye glasses

Some people manage to keep those shields going forever, but If you’ve had the same one for 6 months or more, it may have gotten to the point where it’s more difficult to clean. Consider whether it’s time to get new ones.

Examples:

6. Replace Eye Eco moisture goggles or parts?

A little bird told us that if you call Eye Eco directly, you may be able to get some spare foams for your Tranquileyes still (though they are not listed on their site for sale). Most other spare parts are, unfortunately, no longer being made, but there are still spare straps available for Eyeseals 4.0.

Scleral Lens Spring Cleaning

1. Discard expired contact lens solutions

Most contact lens solutions are dated for 2 to 3 years from the date of manufacture, but sometimes they may get sold much closer to expiration, especially if they are specialty items with infrequent production runs. Always check.

2. Discard contact lens solutions that have been open too long

Look for the box, bottle or package insert for instructions for your product. 

The general rule of thumb is 3 months for a multi-purpose solution. 

Purilens user? This product should never be used more than 14 days after opening (less, if instructed by your lens provider).

3. Replace plungers

DMV insertion and removal plungers, EZI rings, See-Green plungers: their surface eventually does degrade and they become harder to clean, so consider replacing them every six months.

4. Discard contact lens cases

Contact lens cases are notorious in the eye care world for being incredibly unhygienic. Optometrists who give lectures at medical conferences compete for the most disgusting pictures and terrifying stories of cases their patients brought in.

Contact lens cases are cheap, and they’re included for free with most multi-purpose solutions, so there’s no reason to keep them around longer than your bottle of solution lasts.

Clear Care user? The Clear Care case is included with every package, so there's no reason to keep the old ones. However, it seems to be generally accepted practice to keep PROSE cases for much longer, since they are expensive to replace and the Clear Care (hydrogen peroxide) solution itself disinfects the case each time it is used.

But before you toss all this stuff in the trash...

Consider your recycling options!

  • contact lens cases
  • contact solution bottle caps
  • eye drop single use vials

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1 comment
  • Informative and interesting. Thank you for email and for sharing. Helpful in many ways.

    Frances L. Graves on

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