A Beginner’s Guide to Wearing Contact Lenses
Whether you are considering one of the most popular alternatives to wearing glasses or just picked up your first set of contact lenses, it’s understandable you may have questions. The prospect of not having to wear your traditional eyewear all the time — or leaving it behind altogether — may excite you, but you might be unsure how to best place contacts in your eyes or wonder how often you need to change them out.
Our skilled optometrists in the La Jolla, CA, Carmel Valley, CA, and San Diego, CA-area have helped patients just like you correct problems with their vision. Here, they have put together a beginner’s guide to wearing contact lenses to lay out the basics of wearing and maintaining your lenses as well as answer frequently asked questions.
How Do I Put in Contact Lenses?
It can be tricky to learn how to put contacts in your eyes if you’re new to them. Follow these steps to put your contacts in easily and safely:
- Wash your hands: Before you start, ensure your hands are dry and free of dirt, debris, and oil from your skin that could otherwise be transferred to your eye.
- Make sure the lens is not inside out: Place the lens on the tip of your finger; if the edges flare out, you know that it’s inside out. A right-side-up lens will look like a bowl with straight edges.
- Gently hold your eye open: With the non-lens hand, carefully pull up on your upper eyelid and down on your lower.
- Place the contact lens in: While looking upward, place the contact lens by lightly touching the lens to the surface of your eye. Then, slowly release your eyelids and close your eye for a moment to allow the contact to settle.
How Long Can I Wear Contact Lenses?
How long you can wear your lenses largely depends on the kind you have — whether that be disposable soft, continuous-wear, and progressive contact lenses. Make sure to follow prescription instructions or consult your optometrist if you have any questions regarding the duration for which you should wear them.
How Do I Remove Contact Lenses?
As you might assume, removing contact lenses is essentially a reverse operation of putting them in. Let’s take a closer look at how to remove contact lenses:
- Just as you would before placing them, ensure your hands are clean and dry.
- Hold your eye open: Some wearers prefer to look up and pull their lower eyelid downward; others may use multiple fingers to pull on both the upper and lower. We recommend doing what feels most comfortable to you.
- Gently pinch the lens with your index finger and thumb and pull the lens away: Make sure you’re touching just the lens itself, not squeezing or poking at your eye.
How Do I Take Care of My Contact Lenses?
The simplest way to minimize your risk of eye infections is to take proper care of your contacts. Here are some points to keep in mind:
- Store contact lenses in a disinfecting solution every night.
- Discard the solution in your lens case after putting the lenses in, and rinse your case with a saline solution.
- Refrain from sleeping or showering with your lenses in.
- Replace your lens case roughly every three months.
Contact Us to Learn More About Wearing Contact Lenses
Whether you’re due for an eye exam or want to make the switch to contact lenses, reach out to GW Eye Associates today. For more information about how we can address your vision problems with the help of our full suite of optometry solutions, contact our office online or call (858) 454-4699.