If you do not have 20/20 vision, you may prefer contact lenses to glasses. While Indiana law allows you to wear contacts when you drive, your lenses may put you at increased risk for an automobile accident. That is, if something happens to your contacts, you may not be able to see the road.
To be sure your contacts do their job, you must store and use them correctly. You also likely need to replace your lenses regularly. Even then, you should realize your car may be bad for your contact lenses.
You use your car’s climate control to stay comfortable during hot and cold months. The defroster also keeps your windshield clear. Unfortunately, though, blowing air may dry out your contact lenses. While eye drops may help, protective lenses may deflect circulating air away from your eyes.
Your car’s heating and air conditioning systems can accumulate dust. If you have an allergic reaction to this dust or the mites that feed on it, your contacts may develop a gunky film. Because this film may impair your vision, you may want to schedule a deep cleaning of your car’s vents if you are prone to allergies.
There may be a significant difference between temperatures inside and outside your vehicle. If your eyes are sensitive to temperature changes, they may produce excess moisture. This, in turn, may cause your contacts to blur or dislodge. To avoid this potentially dangerous occurrence, you should allow your eyes to adjust before beginning to drive.
The windshield in your car does not offer much protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Failing to protect your eyes from UV rays may leave you with a serious corneal burn. Therefore, if your contact lenses do not have built-in UV protection, you should wear sunglasses when you drive. Special glasses may also protect your contacts during nighttime driving conditions.
When they function correctly, your contact lenses give you the visual acuity you need to operate your car safely. Once you recognize how your car may affect your contacts, you can take steps to protect your vision every time you drive.