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Eyeglass Care

Your glasses will last longer and keep your vision clear if you keep them clean and in good repair. Lenses that are scratched can cause blurry vision, glare, or annoying reflections. Eyeglass frames that are bent or broken may not sit properly on your face and may make your vision blurry, too.

How do I care for my eyeglass lenses?

The best way to clean your lenses is by using liquid non-moisturizing hand soap or liquid dishwashing detergent. Do not use glass cleaner, paint thinner, or nail polish remover as these chemicals can damage the lenses. Rinse the lenses under warm tap water. Then use a soft lint-free cloth to dry them off. Do not use paper towels, toilet paper, or facial tissues because they can scratch the lenses. Most lenses have a scratch-resistant coating on them to help reduce the scratches, but it does not make them scratch proof. You can also buy an eyeglass spray cleaner and microfiber cleaning cloths that are made for eyeglasses.

Hairspray can damage your lenses. It can leave permanent spots on the lenses. Before you spray your hair, either take off your glasses or put your hand on your forehead like a visor to shield your glasses.

People who paint may get speckles of paint on their glasses. Paint specks are very easy to remove. Simply scrape them off with your fingernail.

Another way to prevent scratched lenses is to be careful where you put your glasses. The best place to put glasses when they are not being worn is in their case. Never set your glasses lens-down on a hard surface. Set your glasses on the table so that the top of the frame or the folded ear pieces rests on the table.

If you have rimless glasses, take extra care to avoid chipping the lens when you put them down. It is not safe to wear a chipped lens. A lens that has a chipped edge or even a deep scratch in it can shatter more easily and possibly damage your eye. Any chipped or deeply scratched lens needs to be replaced to be safe.

How do I take care of my eyeglass frames?

Your eyeglasses should sit straight and snug on your face. You need a proper fit for the best vision. To keep them fitting properly, use both hands to put them on and to take them off. Don’t push your glasses up to the top of your head, because it can bend the frame. If the frames stretch out of shape or get bent, your eye care provider can straighten them for you.

Use a small screw driver, available in an eyeglass tool kit that you can buy at the store to keep the screws tight, or ask your eye care provider to tighten them.

Do not leave glasses in your car. The heat that builds up in a car on a hot summer day can damage eyeglasses. Plastic frames can soften and lose their shape very easily in the heat. The heat can even cause the lenses to warp and distort your vision.

Reviewed for medical accuracy by faculty at the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins. Web site:

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