Using contact lenses for the first time can be challenging generally because there are so many rules concerned with the correct use of lenses. If you don’t follow these rules, wearing contact lenses can end up uncomfortable, irritating, or even dangerous to your eye health.
According to vision care consultants, contact lenses are a great alternative for people who might not like wearing glasses for various reasons. There are people who can’t wear glasses because of their career is highly physical, such as athletes or construction workers. There are people who can’t wear glasses because they find that wearing contacts is better for their daily activities, such as actors or doctors. Finally, there are just people who find that wearing glasses is just too much of a hassle and contacts are much more convenient.
How to Orient Contacts Properly
The first problem that many people struggle with is figuring out how to apply them correctly to their eyes. You would be surprised how many people accidentally wear their contact lenses inside-out! The trick to knowing if your contact lens is properly oriented is to place them on the tip of your pointer finger and see whether there is a “cup” formed. Hold the lens up directly at eye level and look for that cup dip. If the sides of your contact lenses are flaring out, this means that the lens is inside-out. The sides should curve smoothly downwards; that’s how you know that the lenses are oriented correctly.
Some branded lenses can also have the name of the maker laser-engraved into the surface. Check whether you can read the brand name correctly; if you can’t, this might be a sign that the lenses are not oriented correctly.
How to Wear Contacts Correctly
Here are some tips to keep in mind to help you wear your contacts correctly:
- Keep Your Hands Clean
Always make sure that your hands are clean before you put your lens on. Dirty contact lenses or contaminated hands can lead to serious eye-related diseases. Use mild, unscented soap to sanitize your hands, as harsh or scented soaps can contaminate the lens surface.
- Do It Right to Left
Always pick one eye to put in your lens first. If you do your right eye first, always pick that eye from now on so that you don’t mix up the lenses.
- Don’t Force the Lens out of the Case
Most contact lenses are soft and pliable, and trying to force them out of the case can bend or damage the lens. If they are sticking to the storage case, gently shake it to dislodge the lens and slide them out carefully.
- Have an Appropriate Lens Solution Ready
Before applying your contact lenses, rinse them thoroughly with a contact lens solution. This both moisturizes the lens for easier application and removes any dust that may be stuck on the surface of the lens.
- Learn How to Apply the Lens Properly
Put the lens on the tip of your dry and clean finger, making sure that the lenses are oriented properly. Look up or down (depending on your preference) and gently place the lens against your eye. Close your eye and roll it around to allow the lens to settle properly.
- Use a Mirror
A mirror will help you properly and quickly apply your lens correctly.
- Use a Plunger to Remove Your Lens
Many beginners find it difficult to remove their contact lenses, especially during the first few weeks of wearing them. You can ask your eye doctor for a special type of plunger that can help you remove the lens easily and without damaging the lens.
Some Don’ts to Keep In Mind
- Don’t fall asleep wearing your contact lens. There are times when you’re just so tired that you immediately fall asleep before you remember to remove your contact lens! If this is the case, create an alarm reminder on your phone that will go off around your bedtime to remind you to remove the lens.
- Don’t take a shower with your contact lens inside your eyes. Your contact lens can trap dirty water or soap scum between your eye and your lens. This is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and it can cause serious eye diseases.
- Don’t use harsh, oil-based makeup when you have contact lens on. As much as possible, avoid all contact between your makeup and contact lens, even if the makeup is mild and water-based.
- Don’t share contact lens with other people! Even if you are only wearing a cosmetic lens, never allow other people to wear them.