Is that O.K. to snorkel with contact lens?

Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:16 AM
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Is that O.K. to snorkel with contact lens?

Hi, dear friends,
I'm going to maui and kauai next month and I will definitely go snorkeling. Since I'm wearing contact lens every day, I wonder how about that I still wear contact lens when I snorkel. How good is the mask protection?
Thanks in advance for your comments.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:19 AM
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If you swim with them in, this should be no problem. I do it all the time.

If your prescription is weak, you may not "have" to because you get about a 20% magnification underwater.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:36 AM
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Why don't you ask the ONE person who would know definitively--your ophthalmologist. We had a guest (unfortunately a foreign visitor) who swam with her contacts and got a horrendous eye infection. Our dr. said, absolutely no.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 07:06 AM
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I can't suggest either way since this is between you and your Dr., however, my son who's very near sighted snorkeled with his contacts in very successfully. A good quality, well fitting mask is key so if you're considering it, think about buying one from a reputable outfitter. It may well be worth the price.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 07:16 AM
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I snorkeled with contacts for years (oxygen permeable) For that reason, I always used my own mask. Practice with it- learn how to adjust it for proper seal. Be sure not to get hair in the way on forehead. I must say, swimming and snorkeling are a lot better now that I had LASIK!!!
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 07:20 AM
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As a previous poster stated,there is a magnification of about 20%. I have been diving for years and have never worn them,I see just fine with a mask. Understand this may not fit you eye script,but keep that in mind.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 07:25 AM
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You could do what I did--spend a few extra bucks and get a prescription mask. It really isn't expensive and will save you a lot of worry about losing your lenses.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 08:41 AM
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I've swam in the ocean for 20 years w/ contacts, snorkled once...never a problem.

Gretchen - what body of water was your friend swimming in?
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 08:49 AM
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Father surfed, snorkled and swam with his in. I have also swum and snorkled with mine and been fine. I would certainly take an extra pair just in case you do lose one it won't put a crimp in the rest of your trip.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 08:52 AM
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I've done it with no problems, and I am nearsighted, so I did need them. The only danger is if your mask leaked a lot, you could lose your contacts if the water touched your eyes. Then again, I wear the "wear and toss" kind, so it's no big deal if I lose one!
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 08:53 AM
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I would ask my doctor. My cousin snorkeled with her contacts in and also got a terrible eye infection and had to wear a patch for a few days. That could ruin anyone's vacation.

Like Bugswife I bought a mask with a prescription. It's not expensive at all and will save you the worry of anything happening to your eyes.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 10:42 AM
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My husband and I have both snorkeled for years with our contacts without any problems. My husband actually wears glasses normally but prefers to snorkel with contacts rather than a prescription mask. I wear my contacts every day. We've logged many dives wearing contacts too. I always bring extra lens just in case but haven't lost one yet. Just make sure your mask fits properly without any leaks and you should be fine.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 11:20 AM
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You should speak to your eye doctor about getting a box daily disposable contacts just for your trip.

I wear contacts that you throw out each night. When I asked my eye doctor if I could snorkle with them, she said "Yes". You just have to throw them out afterwards.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 12:19 PM
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With my gas perm lenses, I could swim, snorkle, raft, water ski, you name it. A little splash of water in the eye never dislodged or upset them. However, when I wore the soft lenses for a time (years ago) the tiniest drop of water irritated my eyes. That's just my own personal experience.

FYI, laser eye surgery changed my life! It's been six years now and my vision is still better than 20/20, without all the hassle and irritation of contacts. If you've ever considered this surgery, especially if you are severly nearsighted like I was, you may really be amazed by the results.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:09 PM
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before i did the laser surgery, i snorkeled with my contacts (many times) and never had any problems. same for my husband.
and i had no idea one could get a prescription mask...interesting.
 
Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:49 PM
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It is not recommended to wear your contacts while swimming. That does not mean you will suffer and harm your eyes if you do, but the risk is much higher than if you wore contacts and did not go swimming.

You could get an Acanthomeoba (spelling?) infection which is very serious. Ask your ophthalmologist (M.D.)
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:55 PM
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My husband and I have both swum (swam?) and snorkeled year-round for 25 years with soft contacts. No problem. But it MUST be salt water...regular water is awful and pools worse!
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 06:58 PM
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I have scuba dived to 130 feet with contacts and had no problems whatsoever.
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 08:22 PM
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I've snorkled in my gas perm lenses and had no problems at all. You wouldn't want water rushing in through the mask anyhow, and a few drops won't bother your eyes. But I'm finally getting lasik (been putting it off because I have to wear glasses for five months first due to wearing contacts for so long) and I can't wait!
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Old Jul 25th, 2003, 09:54 PM
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Monica, I feel your pain, lol. Having to wear the coke bottle glasses in public every day and struggling to see with them was the hard part. But it will be worth it, trust me. Everyone will be thrilled for you the day you walk in without those glasses and you can SEE!

I remember the weirdest part of it all was feeling the air on my eyes after the surgery, because they'd always been behind contacts or glasses, never "exposed" so to speak. They watered for a while, now I'm used to it. Best of luck with your Lasik.
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