- Vision & Eye Care
How to Put in Contacts
How to Put in Contact Lenses
For some people, putting in contact lenses can be a challenge. Many of these issues come from the lack of the ability to touch the eye. I myself had serious problems with this. I first attempted to get contacts the summer before my freshman year of high school. Because of my inability to touch my eye, I wasn't able to actually get contacts until the summer before my junior year. Being able to put in contact lenses was an annoying issue. However, by using the right technique and practicing extensively, anyone can learn to put in contacts.
I am going to go over the method for practicing touching the eye and for actually putting in the contact lenses. They both have the same procedure involved; actually putting in contacts just has a few extra steps tacked on.
Touching the Eye
First, wash your hands. You are going to be touching your eyes, so you want to make sure that your hands are clean. For simplicity, I am going to assume throughout this guide that you are right-handed. If you're left-handed, I'm really sorry that the world thinks the way you do stuff is weird. Fortunately though, all of these steps can be reversed for the left hand.
Take your left hand, reach up and over your field of vision, and place your middle finger upon your top eyelid. Then, take your right hand, and place your middle finger onto the bottom eyelid. Pull your eyelids as far open as possible. Then look upward and attempt to touch your eye with your right index finger. Obviously, this can be challenging due to the reflex to blink as soon as you near contact with the eye. With enough practice however, you should be able to touch the eye for at least a couple seconds. If you practice doing this for both eyes, you should have gained the prerequisite ability needed to put in contacts. The same series of steps should be taken with both eyes: don't switch hands. If you are right-handed, your right hand should always be used to put in the lens for each eye. The opposite is true if your are left-handed.
How to Put in Contacts
Fortunately, the same techniques you used to practice touching the eye can be used to actually put in contacts, with a few extra steps. Before you attempt to put in the lenses, you need to wash you hands and the lenses. To wash a lens, simply place it in the palm of you left hand. Squirt a little contact lens cleaning solution onto it and swirl it around with your right index finger. Then place the contact onto your right index finger, dump the solution in your palm into the sink, and you are ready to go.
Make sure to place the contact on the tip of your finger. This makes it easiest to put the contact in. Now, follow the procedure outlined previously for holding your eye open, except now, you will be placing the contact onto your eye rather than just touching it. This works best if you can look into a mirror up until the moment you touch the contact to your eye. Doing this helps you line it up correctly. Depending on the size of your eye, this could be a difficult fit between your eyelids. Also, try to avoid jabbing yourself in the eye. Pain doesn't make this process any easier. If you have managed to put the contact onto your eye, resist the urge to blink. Instead, swivel your eye around in every direction for a second or two to help work out any air bubbles. Then, you may close your eye.
If it seems like your contact just doesn't want to go onto your eye, it could be one of two problems. One, it could have become too dry due to multiple failed attempts. This can be remedied by simply squirting it with a little bit of solution. Second, it could be due to the contact being inside out. This can be difficult to spot with the naked eye, even for someone with perfect eyesight, so there is a little trick for testing the contact. Put it back in the palm of your hand, this time placed in the middle of a crease in the palm. Close your hand slowly and you should seem the contact fold down the middle. If after trying several times the contact just doesn't fold, then try putting it inside out. If the trick works after this change, then the contact should now be ready to go onto the eye. If you have succeeded then congratulations; you are now able to put in contacts! Welcome to the wonderful world of contact lenses! It's a much less blurry place.
How to Take out Contacts
Since no true guide to putting in contacts would be complete without showing how to take them out again, I have included this step as well. This is very similar to putting in contacts;in fact,if you are able to put in contacts, you should be able to take them out. Do all of the normal procedures for touching the eye up until you have spread your eyelids open. At that point, look straight upward. Then take your right index finger and attempt to grab the bottom of the contact. You will have to drag it down to the bottom of your eyeball. Then, attempt to pinch some of it between your right index finger and thumb. This can be painful if you are to imprecise or have to do it multiple times, so be careful. As soon as you have the contact pinched, pull it away from the eye. As you can see, this uses nearly the exact same method as the one used to put in contacts. Then you can place it into the correct half of a contacts case. Be sure to fill it up with plenty of solution: you don't want your contacts to dry out.
If you have managed to do all of these steps successfully, then you should congratulate yourself. Being able to put in contacts involves mastering the basic impulse to blink, which is always a challenge. So, be proud of what you have accomplished. Contacts are a huge improvement over glasses, and being able to put them in and take them out again is a difficult achievement. I have worn them for almost 2 years now myself, and I have never looked back. And neither will you.