How to Properly Clean and Disinfect Your Glasses During the Pandemic

May 20, 2020
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As a society, we’ve become almost too aware of the surfaces we touch out of fear that we’re spreading coronavirus.

The novel virus has been said to survive for hours or even days on certain surfaces that we come in contact with everyday.

One surface we tend to overlook is the one staring right back at us and sitting on the bridge of our nose -- our glasses.

One study indicated that droplets from the virus can live on glasses for up to four days. It can also live on plastic and stainless steel, both materials used to make lenses and frames, for up to three days.

Glasses are our first line of defense against germs and other particles, and though we touch them frequently, we rarely think about cleaning them with the same meticulous detail and care as we do our hands and other surfaces.

Dr. Barbara Horn, president of the American Optometric Association told “Today” that she suggests cleaning both prescription glasses as well as sunglasses after any contact with others in a public space.

“Every time I walk in my home, the first thing I do is… wash my hands and then wash my glasses,” Horn said.

She  revealed that the best method for cleaning is using a mixture of soap and water.

Here are the steps suggested by Horn:

- Rinse glasses first to remove particles that may scratch the glasses.
- Put one to two droplets of soap onto the lens and rub it around lightly with a microfiber cloth or disposable lens cleaning wipes.
- Clean the nose pads, which sit directly on your face, and the side where the lens meets the frame.
- Clean the whole frame including the ear piece behind the ear.
- Dry off frames with a soft cloth. Avoid paper towels as they can scratch the lens.

One thing Horn believes you should avoid is blowing on your glasses to clean them off.

During pre-coronavirus times, using your breath to create steam to wipe your glasses may have been acceptable, but now, the last thing you want to do is breathe germs directly onto the glasses you’re going to be wearing.

Similarly, she cautioned against using chemicals and cleaning agents such as rubbing alcohol or bleach as they can be harsh on anti-reflective or non-glare coatings.

Another problem people with glasses tend to run into during coronavirus? Fogging.

Many have noticed that when you breathe while wearing a mask, it causes your glasses to fog up. Today reported that it happens for several reasons including the fit of the mask.

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