We are leading the way in reducing plastic pollution from Contact Lenses to help children with reading difficulties
Contact lenses provide a very welcome and sought-after relief from the burden of spectacle wear for millions of people in the UK. The advent of disposable contact lenses, especially those replaced daily have significantly improved the health of the eyes of wears and reduced the risk of infections to extremely low levels making contact lenses a safe option to glasses. They have also made contact lenses much more convenient and affordable for full and part time wear.
However, the additional safety and convenience come at a price. There is a huge increase in the amount of plastic waste which is adding to the growing issue of plastic pollution. Not only the contact lenses themselves but the plastic packaging.
About 3.7 million people in the UK wear contact lenses, about 20% of all wearers admit to disposing of their contact lenses down the sink or in the toilet. This is adding tons of non-degradable plastics into the sewage facilities every year and inevitably harming the environment.
Award-winning contact lens practitioner and pioneer Bhavin Shah is directing the way in helping the environment. They are partnering with leading contact lens manufacturer, Johnson and Johnson and recycling firm, TerraCycle, to offer to recycle not only contact lenses but also packaging and foil covering. The money raised by recycling contact lens materials will go to a charity that helps children with learning difficulties.
“Plastic packaging is beginning to cause devastating effects to the environment, wildlife and the planet.” Says Bhavin Shah. “After hearing about the damage to communities and animals due to plastics making their way to the seas, I knew that contact lenses and their packages were having an impact on our environment and ecology. After some investigation, I learned about Terracycle’s ability to recycle contact lens materials and reached out to set-up a recycling scheme in the practice. It’s amazing to use the money raised from recycling to help children who are struggling to read. It's available to all, even if you are not our patient, please come and drop of your contact lens plastic and contribute to helping our environment.”
Central Vision Opticians is highly recognised for helping children who are short-sighted with their pioneering work in fitting contact lenses for children that help to slow down the natural deterioration of their vision. “As well as good hygiene and visual habits, it's great to be able to teach children the importance of protecting the environment because it will be their world in the future.”