Contact lenses are thin lenses placed directly on the surface of the eye and are a safe form used for functional, optical reasons, aesthetic or cosmetic reasons. They are especially preferred for sports and other outdoor activities, and different from spectacles, contact lenses typically provide better peripheral vision and do not collect moisture or perspiration.
Putting contact lenses in and taking them out is easier than you might think, however, if not used properly, they may cause some serious consequences. That’s why learning how to put in contact lenses is a crucial first step you should not skip, before actually trying to put in your contacts. It may take a few days for your eyes to get used to the feeling of wearing lenses and if you’re having any trouble, give yourself time and re-check the steps once again.
According to the CDC, almost 1 million health care visits for keratitis or contact lens complications occur annually. Therefore, healthy habits are equivalent to healthy eyes.
Consider adopting the below-habits when learning how to put in contact lenses correctly and lessen your chances of getting an eye infection:
How to put in contact lenses easily
1. Wash your hands thoroughly
Before you touch your contact lenses, make sure to wash your hands with soap and rinse thoroughly. Dry your hands with a towel or using an air dryer.
Make sure to rinse your lenses as well. For this, use a disinfecting solution to remove dirt or debris. Don’t forget to avoid water for rinsing or storing contacts. When you’re not using your contacts, store them in contact lens solution to clean, rinse, and disinfect your lenses.
2. Place the contact lens on your index finger
Before putting in your contact lens, you might even add a little bit of solution on your finger where you intend to hold the contact lens.
Make sure to watch out for rips, tears, or debris, or dust. If you detect the latter one present, you can simply rinse with lens solution.
3. Check if your contact lenses are inside out
Before putting the lenses on, you should check if they are inside out. To do this, put the lens on the tip of your finger and hold it up to the light. If the edges flare out, it’s inside out. If it happens to have number indicators, make sure the digits aren’t backward.
4. Pull your upper and lower eyelids with your fingers
With one finger hold your upper eyelid and try not to blink for a moment. Then pull down your lower eyelid with your other fingers. Move the contact towards your eye steadily while trying to look upward as you place it over your iris. Slowly release your eyelid, slowly release your eyelid, allowing your eye to close for a moment so the lens can settle. You can also gently slide the contact lens over your eyeball if necessary.
5. Blink a few times naturally, so that the lens centers and your eye adjusts it.
6. If the lens feels uncomfortable, there may be an air bubble. Therefore, keep your finger on the center of the lens and slightly move it around to remove any air that may be trapped underneath, so the lens fits closely to the shape of your eyeball. You can also close your eye and tenderly massage your eyelid with your fingertip, so the lens will be centered. If your lens still doesn’t feel comfortable or you feel like they are irritating your eyes, remove it, and check for damage or debris. If the lenses are damaged, then throw them away. Otherwise, use solution to rinse them and reinsert.
Repeat the same process on your other eye.
Putting in contact lenses for the first time can sound scary if you don’t know exactly which steps to follow. However, with the right manual, patience, and time, worry not, as the more you practice the easier it will get every time.