Wearing contact lenses can be convenient and comfortable, but it’s important to use them properly to avoid eye infections and damage. One common mistake people make is putting their lenses in inside out. While it may seem harmless, wearing your contacts inside out can cause eye irritation, discomfort, and in some cases, even long-term damage. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about inside-out contact lenses, and how to tell if you’re wearing them the wrong way.
Why Wearing Contacts Inside Out Can Be Harmful to Your Eyes
When you wear your contacts outside-in, the curved surface of the lens fits perfectly over your cornea, the clear front part of your eye. This keeps the lens in place and allows it to correct your vision as needed. However, when you accidentally insert your contacts inside-out, the curved surface is facing in the wrong direction, causing the lens to shift around on your eye. This can lead to discomfort, blurry vision, dry eyes, and even scratches on your cornea. In the worst-case scenario, improper contact lens wear can cause permanent damage and vision loss.
It is important to always check the orientation of your contacts before inserting them into your eyes. One way to do this is to place the lens on the tip of your finger and examine the edges. If they flare out slightly, the lens is in the correct orientation. If they curve inward, the lens is inside-out and needs to be flipped. Taking the time to properly insert your contacts can prevent discomfort and potential eye damage.
The Importance of Proper Contact Lens Care and Maintenance
Before we delve further into the topic of inside-out contact lenses, it’s important to emphasize the importance of proper care and maintenance of your lenses. This includes washing your hands before handling your lenses, using recommended cleaning solutions and storage cases, replacing your lenses according to your eye doctor’s instructions, and avoiding contact with water when wearing your lenses. By following these guidelines, you can reduce your risk of eye infections and other complications.
It’s also important to note that not all contact lenses are created equal. Some lenses may require different care and maintenance than others. For example, daily disposable lenses may not require as much cleaning and storage as monthly or yearly lenses. It’s important to follow the specific instructions provided by your eye doctor or the manufacturer of your lenses to ensure proper care and maintenance.
In addition to proper care and maintenance, it’s important to schedule regular check-ups with your eye doctor. Even if you don’t experience any issues with your lenses, your eye doctor can check for any changes in your vision or eye health that may require adjustments to your contact lens prescription or care routine. By staying on top of your eye health, you can ensure that you’re taking the best possible care of your eyes and your contact lenses.
What Happens When You Wear Contacts Inside Out?
Wearing your contacts inside out can cause a variety of uncomfortable symptoms, such as itching, burning, tearing, and redness. You may also experience blurry vision, as a result of the lens not fitting properly on your cornea. Additionally, wearing your contacts inside out can increase the risk of scratches and other damage to your cornea, particularly if you wear your lenses for extended periods of time.
Common Signs and Symptoms of an Inside-Out Contact Lens
If you suspect that your contacts may be inside out, there are several signs and symptoms to look out for, including:
- A feeling of discomfort or irritation in your eye
- Blurred vision, particularly around the edges of your field of view
- An uneven or wobbly fit of the contact lens on your eye
- The edges of the lens appearing more curved or flared out than usual
- The lens flipping over or falling out of your eye more easily than usual
How to Safely Remove an Inside-Out Contact Lens
If you think you may have an inside-out contact lens in your eye, it’s important to remove it safely and without causing any damage. Start by washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water, then look in a mirror and use your index finger and thumb to gently pinch the lens off your eye. If you’re having trouble removing the lens, try adding some saline solution to your eye to help lubricate it.
The Differences Between Inside-Out and Right-Side-Out Contact Lenses
So, how can you tell if your contact lens is inside out or not? There are a few subtle differences between the two that you can look for:
- The edges of an inside-out contact lens will be more curved or flared out than those of a right-side-out lens
- An inside-out lens will form a “U” shape when placed on your finger, while a right-side-out lens will form more of a cup shape
- The numbers or letters on the lens will appear reversed if it’s inside out
How to Avoid Putting Your Contacts in Inside Out
The best way to avoid wearing your contacts inside out is to get into the habit of always checking them before you insert them into your eyes. Follow these steps:
- Clean and dry your hands thoroughly with soap and water
- Hold the lens up to the light and make sure it looks like a half-moon shape, with equal curves on either side
- If the edges flare out or look like a “U” shape, the lens is inside out and needs to be flipped around
- Insert the lens carefully, making sure it sits smoothly on your cornea
- Repeat these steps for your other contact lens
Tricks for Identifying an Inside-Out Contact Lens Quickly and Easily
If you’re having trouble telling if your contacts are inside out, there are a few simple tricks you can try:
- Hold the lens up to your eye, and if it looks like a bowl or a perfectly round circle, it’s likely right-side-out
- Place the lens on the tip of your finger, and if it looks like a regular “U” shape, it’s likely inside-out
- Try inserting the lens into your eye, and if it feels uncomfortable or doesn’t fit snugly, it may be inside out
Can You Still Wear Your Contacts If They Are Inside Out?
If you accidentally put your contact lens in inside out, you may be able to wear it for a short period of time, but it’s generally not recommended. The lens will likely cause discomfort and may shift around on your eye, increasing the risk of irritation and damage. It’s best to remove the lens and flip it around before inserting it properly.
Tips for Comfortable Contact Lens Wear, Even with an Inside-Out Lens
If you’re experiencing discomfort or irritation from wearing an inside-out contact lens, there are a few tips you can try to make your eyes feel more comfortable:
- Blink frequently to help keep your eyes hydrated
- Use lubricating eye drops to relieve dryness and irritation
- Remove and reinsert your contacts if they continue to feel uncomfortable
- Try switching to glasses temporarily if your eyes need a break from your contacts
When to Call Your Eye Doctor About an Issue with Your Contact Lenses
If you’re experiencing persistent discomfort, redness, or irritation from your contact lenses, it’s important to contact your eye doctor as soon as possible. You should also seek medical attention if you develop any symptoms of an eye infection, such as pain, swelling, or discharge from your eye. Prompt treatment can help prevent long-term damage to your eyes and vision.
Understanding the Anatomy of a Contact Lens: What Makes It Flip?
So, what causes a contact lens to flip inside out? The answer lies in the design of the lens itself. Contact lenses are made up of a thin, flexible material that is curved on both sides to match the shape of your cornea. The edges of the lens are usually thinner and more flexible than the center, which allows the lens to fold in on itself if it’s not placed on your eye correctly. Additionally, some contact lenses have markings on them to help you tell if they’re inside out, although not all brands use this feature.
How Does the Shape of Your Eye Affect the Positioning of Your Contacts?
The shape of your eye can play a role in how well your contact lenses fit and stay in place. Some people have a more curved cornea than others, which can make it harder for the lens to maintain its correct orientation. Additionally, certain eye conditions, such as astigmatism or keratoconus, can cause irregularities in the shape of your cornea, which may require specialty contact lenses or other treatments. It’s important to discuss any concerns about the fit of your contacts with your eye doctor, who can help you find the best solution for your unique needs.
The Pros and Cons of Wearing Contacts vs Glasses.
If you’re considering wearing contacts, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of this option compared to glasses. Some potential advantages of contacts may include:
- Improved peripheral vision
- No visual distortion from the frames of glasses
- No fogging up in humid or rainy weather
- No changes to your appearance
On the other hand, some potential disadvantages of contacts may include:
- Difficulty inserting and removing the lenses
- The risk of eye infections or other complications
- The need for daily cleaning and storage routines
- The cost of purchasing and replacing lenses and cleaning solutions
What To Do If You Accidentally Put In An Inside-Out Contact.
If you accidentally insert an inside-out contact lens, don’t panic. You can simply remove and flip the lens around before reinserting it. However, if you notice any symptoms of discomfort or irritation, or if the lens is difficult to remove or reposition, contact your eye doctor for further guidance. It’s always better to err on the side of caution when it comes to your eye health.
Steps To Take If You Have Been Wearing An Inside-Out Contact All Day.
If you’ve been wearing an inside-out contact lens all day, you may experience symptoms such as redness, irritation, and discomfort in your eye. It’s important to remove the lens as soon as possible and dispose of it properly. If you continue to experience symptoms, seek medical attention from your eye doctor or another healthcare provider. They may recommend rinsing your eye with saline solution or using a warm compress to help relieve any inflammation or irritation.
Can An Inside-Out Contact Cause Permanent Eye Damage?
In most cases, wearing an inside-out contact lens is unlikely to cause permanent eye damage, particularly if you remove it promptly and seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms of discomfort or irritation. However, there is always a risk of scratches, infections, and other complications from improper contact lens wear, so it’s critical to use your lenses correctly and follow all recommended care and maintenance guidelines.
With the right knowledge, tools, and precautions, wearing contact lenses can be a safe and comfortable way to correct your vision. By checking your lenses carefully before use, following proper care and maintenance procedures, and seeking medical attention if you experience any issues, you can enjoy clear vision without putting your eye health at risk.