If you use glasses or contact lenses then you’re faced with three options if you want to go swimming, whether it’s in a pool or open water:
Number one can be a viable option for many people. If your sight doesn’t require a great deal of correction then as long as you can see people, lane markers and the side of the pool, it’s probably fine. You’ll need to be able to navigate your way to the pool and get in and out, of course.
Open water could be trickier – you need to spot underwater rocks and obstructions, jellyfish and other creatures. But for many individuals it’s a workable solution.
In both cases you also need to keep your glasses or lenses somewhere safe nearby, in a place where you can find them.
This can work, but really only with contact lenses because the arms of spectacles prevent a good seal. With lenses, in theory you can leave them in and pop ordinary swimming goggles or a mask on.
There are two issues here. The first is the risk of losing your contact lenses if you get water behind the goggles or mask, perhaps if they come off or come away from your face.
The second is the risk of infection. Contact lens manufacturers usually recommend that lenses are kept away from any water, and the water in swimming pools and open water is home to a host of microbial organisms that can cause infections and irritation.
Many people swim with soft lenses as they are more likely to stay in the eye in water, but they are more porous than hard lenses so more prone to absorbing harmful compounds.
Combining the benefits that goggles bring in terms of clear vision in the water with the right eye correction for you, prescription goggles offer the best of both worlds.
Not only can you see everything around you as clearly as you can out of the water, you’re protected from infection. Prescription swimming goggles are shatter-proof and have anti-fog treatment so your vision is always clear.
Better all round
Prescription swimming goggles and masks come in many different styles and you can choose from a variety of coloured lenses to protect your eyes from UV rays, or just look cool.
You’ll feel safer and be more confident in and around the water, they will have your exact prescription and you don’t have to worry about being able to find your glasses when you get out.
Prescription Swimming Goggles is part of Butterflies Healthcare.
Feature writer Chris Hogan
Prescription Swimming Goggles
Tel: 0330 660 0796
Open 9am to 5pm, Monday-Friday