A Beginner's Guide to Wearing and Caring for Contact Lenses

February 7, 2023

If you have been fitted with contacts, knowing how to wear them and care for them will help ensure their effectiveness. You will receive instructions on use and care during the contact lens appointment. It may take time to get accustomed to wearing them, but you will enjoy the experience of clear vision without eyeglasses.

Choosing Contact Lenses


It is necessary to know there are various types of contact lenses. Your eye doctor will recommend the best ones for your eye condition. Soft lenses are the most common type of contact lenses. They are soft and flexible and tend to be the most comfortable. Other types are rigid gas-permeable lenses, toric lenses, daily disposable, extended-wear lenses, and bifocals. Your refractive error and eye condition will determine the best lens type for you. 

Wearing Your Contact Lenses


Before putting your contact lenses in, make sure to wash your hands and dry them using a lint-free towel. Use fragrance-free soap to wash your hands. Begin with the same eye each time to avoid mixing up the lenses. Use your fingertips to slide the lens onto the palm of your hand and rinse it using a lens solution. 

Place the lens on the tip of your index finger and hold your eyelid open with your ring or middle finger. Using a mirror, look forward or up and place the lens in the eye. Close the eye and allow the lens to settle in place. If worn correctly, it should feel comfortable. 

Removing Your Contact Lenses

Take out your contact lenses at the prescribed duration, depending on the type. After carefully washing and drying your hands, hold open your upper eyelid using the middle finger. Using the other hand's middle finger to keep the lower lid, use your thumb and index finger to pry the lens and take it out. Alternatively, you can slide the lens down first before removing it. 

Cleaning Your Contact Lenses

Always use the recommended solution to clean your contacts. Multipurpose solutions are the most common; you can use them to clean soft or hard lenses. They help clean and disinfect lenses while keeping them moist overnight. 

Hydrogen-peroxide-based lens solutions are ideal for people with sensitivities or allergies. The solutions need to be neutralized to prevent stinging. You should not use tap water, rewetting drops, or saliva to clean your lenses.

Storing Contact Lenses 


Place your extended-wear lenses in their case after removing and cleaning them. Use a good-quality storage case to store your contact lenses. Replace the case every three months or as recommended. 

Replace your lenses as often as prescribed, and do not sleep with your contacts. Do not re-wear daily use lenses or reuse cleaning solution from the storage case. Avoid swimming or showering with your lenses in. Schedule an annual checkup to ensure your eyes are in good health. Contact your doctor immediately if you experience any issues from wearing contact lenses. Look for issues such as pain, light sensitivity, blurry vision, eye discharge, and red eyes. 

For more on wearing and caring for contact lenses, visit the Eye Associates of New York at our New York, New York office. Call (212) 650-4888 to schedule an appointment today.

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