Symptoms of eye infection from contacts include, but are not limited to, eye redness; watering of the eyes; changes in sight, such as blurred vision; eye discharge; and eye pain. People who wear contact lenses and experience any of the aforementioned signs and symptoms are strongly advised to consult their doctor as soon as possible. Eye infections not only jeopardize a person's sight, they can be highly contagious, spreading from person to person and from infected eye to uninfected eye. The consultation should first be with a general practitioner, sometimes referred to as a doctor of internal medicine or with one's eye doctor.
There are various types of contact lenses, and some types are considered superior to others when it comes to lowering the risks of eye infection from contacts. Gas-permeable contacts, for example, supposedly allow the eye to "breathe" in order to reduce the chances of developing problems. Disposable contact lenses also are generally considered safer because they do not have to be cleaned, but the symptoms of an eye infection can be experienced regardless of the type of lenses a person wears.
It should be remembered that bacteria, viruses, fungi and foreign bodies in the eye are frequently the things that cause eye infections in general. Contact lenses of any kind certainly can be thought of as a "foreign body" that is not only an object in the eye but also can be a contributor to the creation of a favorable environment for the growth of bacteria and viruses. Although the signs and symptoms of eye infection from contact lenses can be experienced by people who do not wear contacts, they are almost always caused by the contacts themselves in people who wear them.
Some of the same signs and symptoms of eye infection can be experienced in cases of conjunctivitis, an inflammation of the conjunctiva. Infectious conjunctivitis is very contagious, and people who wear contacts are at a higher risk of developing the condition. "Pink eye" is the term most often used by healthcare providers as well as laypeople to refer to conjunctivitis that is brought on by bacteria or viruses. To keep from experiencing the signs and symptoms of eye infection from contacts, it is advisable for wearers to faithfully follow all precautions given for the specific type of contacts used, and they should not be worn while sleeping unless absolutely necessary.