Tips for Inserting and Removing Soft Contact Lenses

Dr. Russel Lazarus, October 5, 2021

Up to 50% of contact lens wearers give up due to difficulties removing or inserting their lenses.

Whether you are an experienced contact lens wearer or a newbie, contact lenses can be challenging to manage. 

Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind while inserting and removing your contact lenses.

Tips for contact lens insertion

  1. Wash and dry your hands. Use a non-scented, antibacterial soap to eliminate germs and bacteria that can be transferred to your contact lens. Then, using a lint-free cloth or paper towel, dry your hands thoroughly so the lens doesn’t stick to your finger.
  1. Check your contact lens. Make sure they’re clean and free from damage or tears— and double-check that your lens isn’t inside out. To do so, place your lens on your finger and hold it towards a light. If the edge of your lens bends outwards, it’s inside out. Some contact lenses have laser marks around their edges to make this detection easier.
  1. Keep your eyelids apart. Gently hold your upper eyelid open with your index or middle finger. Using your second index or middle finger, delicately pull your lower eyelid down. Avoid blinking to prevent your eyelashes from getting in the way upon insertion.
  1. Keep both your eyes open. Slowly slide your contact lens towards your eye while looking upwards.
  1. Release your lower eyelid and then your upper eyelid.Allow the lens to fall into place by closing your eyes for a few moments.
  1. Blink gently a few times to test your focus. Make sure that your contact lens is properly positioned on your eye by looking around your environment toward objects located in varying distances.

SEE RELATED: Why Are My Contact Lenses Uncomfortable?

Schedule an appointment with an eye doctor near you to learn contact lens tips.

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Tips for contact lens removal

  1. Wash and dry your hands first.
  2. Sit or stand over a hard surface. This way, if you drop your lens, it won’t get lost.
  1. Tilt your head forward and pull your lower eyelid down. Gradually pull your lenses away from the cornea and toward the white of your eye.
  1. Softly pinch the sides of the lens. This will break the water forces holding the lens on your eye and allow you to gently pull the lens away from your eye surface.
  1. Properly store your contact lenses. Using a clean contact lens case and recommended saline solutions will ensure that your lenses stay clean and sterile. Never store  your lenses in a cup.

4 Helpful tips to keep in mind

  1. Always start with the same eye when inserting and removing your contact lenses. This will prevent you from confusing your lenses.
  2. Keep your fingernails short. This will help to prevent you from accidentally scratching your eyes.
  3. Place a few drops of eye lubricant into the contact lens to increase moisture and reduce dry eye from contact lens wear. Always consult with your eye doctor first before using any type of eye drop, as not all eye drops are compatible with contact lenses.
  4. Check to see if your eye is moist. Don’t be concerned if you can’t get your contact lens out because your eye is dry. If you feel your eyes are dry, moisten your eye with eye drops before removing the lens.

LEARN MORE: Guide to Contact Lenses 

Contact an eye doctor near you to discuss more tips to keep contact lens wear safe and comfortable. 

Following your eye doctor’s advice could help you to enjoy many years of comfortable contact lens wear and allow you to gain from all the benefits these lenses have to offer.