Glasses, Contact Lenses and SHTF Situations
The main benefit to wearing glasses is that they do not need to be replaced as often as contact lenses. They are also more likely not to get lost, torn or worn out from potential extended use during an emergency. You also don’t need to worry about having supplies on hand for cleaning and storage. However, glasses can become damaged or cracked, and it is important to consider taking some extra steps to maintain the integrity of frames and lenses, especially if you will be using them extensively or under harsh conditions.
The first thing to consider is choosing frames and lenses that can put up with a lot of abuse. This includes sturdy frames that are easy to maintain and can withstand bending, dropping or harsh weather conditions. The second thing is to consider treating your lenses with a special coating that will make them scratch, fade and damage resistant. This will usually cost a bit more money than standard lenses, but that extra layer of protection will go a long way during a disaster. You also want to try and avoid expensive, customized options such as transition lenses or prescription sunglasses. These products tend to be delicate and require special care in order to maintain their integrity and clarity.
The ideal option is to purchase two or more glasses in order to have a backup on hand in case they are needed. You should also consider avoiding fashion and choose frames and lenses based on their utilitarian benefits. A good pair of robust glasses is an essential companion that will serve you well during difficult times.
You should never rely solely on contact lenses to support your vision during a crisis. Aside from the issues related to care, damage and misplacement, contact lenses can easily scratch the eyes, contribute to infections and need to be removed when swimming, dealing with dusty conditions as well as during sleep. While there is nothing wrong with bringing a few pair with you or keeping them stocked in the house, they do require saline solution and other products that may add weight and take up valuable space. It is also difficult to stock up on many contact lens products for the long-term due to their expiration dates.
Finally, you should alternate between contacts and glasses in order to give your eyes a break and allow oxygen to reach your cornea. This will help to minimize infection and promote faster healing if the eye becomes scratched or injured. Glasses can also be worn during the interim if you do sustain an eye injury or suffer from some form of irritation.
In all cases, you should make sure that your prescription is current and a reflection of your current eye condition. You want to have glasses and or contacts that are helping you to see clearly, and keep in mind that you may not be able to get to a doctor during or after a major crisis. Stock up now and be prepared so that you won’t have to contend with vision problems later on when you have more important things to worry about.