Individuals with high refractive errors often have difficulty while swimming. Some may opt to wear contact lenses during swimming. However, wearing contacts, while swimming, can be dangerous.

Although it is not advisable to expose contact lenses to any sort of water, swimming carries even a greater risk due to the prolonged exposure. Potential germs, viruses, or other pathogens may get  trapped against the eye by the lenses when they absorb water.

It’s also possible that swimming in lakes, rivers, and oceans is riskier than swimming in a pool. This is due to the fact that natural bodies of water are more likely to have a variety of bacteria, viruses, and other dangerous diseases that pool chemicals may be able to eradicate.

But that does not imply that wearing contact lenses while swimming in a pool is secure. All pathogens cannot be eradicated by chlorine and other pool chemicals.Pathogens and chemicals from the pool can still get into the eyes because soft lenses in particular are porous.

Wearing contacts during swimming can lead to eye irritation, dry eye syndrome, especially when swimming in a chlorinated pool or salt water, eye infections, corneal abrasion or scratch, eye inflammation (uveitis) or corneal ulcers.

There are certain precautions that one may take to lower the risk of an eye infection. Glasses or goggles can be worn, which can keep water out of the eyes. Moreover, frequent swimmers may get prescription goggles.

If one uses contacts during swimming, they should be immediately removed after swimming and eyes should be properly rinsed. Lenses should be disinfected for 24 hours after swimming with contacts. Alternatively, a fresh pair of clean contact lenses may be used.

Moreover, an ophthalmologist can be consulted about a specific kind of hard gas permeable contact lenses that one can wear at night to reshape the cornea. As a further option for vision correction, one may even think about LASIK.

However it is imperative that one may be watchful about signs of infection such as pain, red or itchy eyes, excessive watering, blurred vision, discharge, swelling, increased sensitivity to light and a foreign body sensation. If any of the aforementioned symptoms are experienced then it is imperative that a doctor may be visited for appropriate management.

At The Eye Center- Dr. Mahnaz Naveed Shah & Associates our team of eight ophthalmology subspecialists/ eye specialists, eye surgeons who are considered amongst the very best eye specialists in Karachi and in Pakistan, have the diagnostic and treatment capabilities to treat from the simplest to the most complex patients. We work hard to provide our patients with the best possible medical and surgical eye care, in a state of the art purpose built eye care facility. We offer the entire array of medical, laser and surgical treatments to help provide patients the best possible care in the most efficient, safe and ethical manner.

If you need an appointment, please contact us at 03041119544 during our working hours or leave us a WhatsApp message at +923028291799 and someone will connect with you. Walk-in appointments are also available for emergencies. We can also be reached through our web portal on

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