Many people around the globe improve their vision by wearing contact lenses instead of eye glasses which can be a bit cumbersome. Despite the advantages of contact lenses, there are the proper instructions that must be followed when wearing them. Unfortunately, in the United States of America, about 40% to 90% of the contact lenses wearers do not follow these instructions which can pose a danger to their eyes. It is very important to make people realize the danger of sleeping with contacts in as many people have admitted to fall asleep when wearing their contacts. To save your vision and eyes, take your contacts off before going to bed.
Risks of Sleeping with Your Contacts On
You have to say farewell to contacts
Just like the other parts of the body, your eyes need sufficient oxygen supply. Wearing contacts during sleep deprives your eye of enough oxygen. This could lead to neovascularization, a new blood cells overgrowth into the cornea. Inflammation happens and if the situation keeps worsening, your eyes will be deformed and no contact lenses will be fit for you any more.
You will have red eyes
A serious red eye is very irritating and this can be seen when constantly sleeping with contacts in. The symptoms of having the contact lens acute red eye may include light sensitivity, painful eyes and reddish eyes.
You may get an eye infection
During sleep when with your contact lenses on, tiny wounds can be created on the epithelial tissue surface due to lack of enough oxygen. These tiny wounds can attract bacteria which could infect the rest of the eye and lead to severe eye issues.
Note: With eye infection, you have to put antibiotic drops to treat it and you cannot wear the lenses even during the day until healed.
You can get ulcers in your eye
When the surface of the cornea is scratched which is something that happens when you sleep with your contact lenses on, you stand a high risk of developing corneal ulcers. Apart from the painful ulcers, you also stand a chance of contracting hypoxia and many other infections when sleeping with contact lenses.
You can become blind
The most fear that almost everyone has is the fear of becoming blind. In severe cases, blindness can happen if you are constantly sleeping with contacts.
Your contacts might not fit well
Your contacts may no longer fit you the way they are meant to if you continue sleeping with them, because a condition known as giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) will happen. This is because sleeping with your contacts irritates your eye, causing small bumps to form underneath your upper eyelids, making your contacts fit poorly.
How to Remove Contacts After Sleeping with Them
Get your hands ready
When you touch your eyes with dirty hands, it may lead to infections such as the acanthamoeba keratitis among others. Besides, long nails can destroy the lenses. To prevent this, cut long finger nails, and clean your hands with soap and warm water before removing your contacts. Dry your hands completely using a clean towel and ensure that no towel fibers are stuck on the fingers.
Hydrate your eyes
To successfully remove the contact lenses, you have to use artificial tears or saline to hydrate the eye. Afterwards, you can easily locate the lenses and stop your eyes from being blurry. But ensure that the tip of the eye drops bottle do not touch the inside of your eyes as it may lead to bacterial infection.
Locate the contacts
Sometimes, when sleeping with contacts in, they can shift from their usual locations. One indication that they are still in your eyes is some pain while opening eyes, some discomfort or even having watery eyes. Look in the mirror and if you cannot see it on the cornea, look under the upper eyelid.
Remove stuck contacts
When a contact lens is stuck underneath your upper eyelid, you need to lift the lid using both your thumb and index finger to remove it. The eyelid has to be inside out for easier removal. There is another option of removing the contacts that is to put in a new contact, blink several times to bring that stuck contacts down. If the contacts stuck on one side of the cornea, you should look in the opposite direction to bring it back to the center of your eye.
Remove with your hands
Gently remove the contact lenses out by squeezing it with your thumb and index finger. You have to do this carefully to avoid hurting your eye and the lenses must be squeezed outwards. After a safe removal, put your contact lenses in a fresh solution to avoid contamination.
Use a suction tool
If you have difficulty in removing your contact lenses, do not force it as this could hurt your eye. Instead, there is a suction tool which is safe to use. It’s made of rubber that can’t scratch your eye surface. Once you locate the contact lenses, put the suction tool on it and once you feel it’s stuck, pull it outwards. The lenses should be stuck on the rubber tool.
Let your eyes rest
After sleeping with contacts in, your eyes might be red or seem irritated once you have removed the contacts. Give your eyes some rest before you put new ones in as you might end up feeling uncomfortable.