Contact Lenses : How to wear and not tear

If you've never had contact lenses or haven't worn them in
a long time and need a refresher, here's a few tips on what
to do and what not to do when wearing and caring for your

First on the list, make sure to listen to what your doctor
tells you. When he or she prescribes the lenses in the
first place, they know what type of lenses they are giving
you as well as the type of care they will require.

Some people need to remove their lenses for a few hours
each day and let their eyes 'rest,' especially in the first
few weeks of wearing new lenses.

Learn to carry rewetting drops with you. Nothing like dry
eyes during work or a meeting will make you wish you had
stashed an extra bottle of solution in your car.

Avoid excessive rubbing at your eyes while wearing them and
wear sunglasses when you're in the bright sun. If your
eyes hurt excessively or you experience severe itching and
redness, call your doctor. These are signs you don't want
to ignore.

One thing your doctor will do on the day you pick up your
new contact lenses is to go over their care. You should
wash your hands every time you intend to handle the lenses.

Microscopic dirt and dust may not seem like much, but when
it is pressed between your eye and the lens, it can cause
discomfort and pain. You will be provided with a holder for
your lenses as well as solution to store them in, depending
on the type of lens you buy. For daily disposables, you
don't have to store them in anything.

Always handle the lenses with care and if by some
occurrence you should happen to tear a lens, never re-use
it. And, despite the urge when solution isn't available,
never use saliva to moisten dry contacts. Your mouth is
filled with bacteria that will contaminate the lens,
possible causing an infection in the eye.

For daily wear contacts, it's good to take them out and
clean them each evening and leave them in a solution over
night. This keeps the lens clean and lubricated. It's a
hard lesson the first time you insert a dirty lens on your
eye or an eyelash is dislodged during the insertion.

If that should happen, let your eye tear naturally - tears
will often wash dust particles or an eyelash out.

Another handy tip that is rarely mentioned (although some
people have certainly had a problem with it) is the drain
plug in the sink. When adjusting your lenses, be sure your
contact lens doesn't fall into the sink and go down the

Most people lean towards their mirror so they can see what
they are doing as they slip their contact lens into place.
The act of leaning forward places you over the sink. It's
a good idea to make sure the drain is in place, just in
Discover important advice and information about contact
lenses. Are soft or hard best ? What's the best cleaning
solutions ? For a comprehensive guide, Click

About the Author

Peter has worn contact lenses all his life. He's tested
different types, and explored all alternatives. In this
series of articles he shares his advice and experiences.