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How to Put in Contacts in 5 Easy Steps

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Contacts are a great way to have clear vision without glasses. Before I had laser eye surgery, I wore contacts to wear all different kinds of sunglasses without needing to have prescription sunglasses. Modern contact lenses are perfectly safe to be worn all day, every day. At the end of this post, I’ll give you three extra tips to make sure your contacts are comfortable for the entire day.

If you’re just starting out with contacts, you might worry about not being able to put the lenses in. If that’s the case, this post is for you. I’m going to go through step-by-step the easiest way to put in your contacts.

You’ll want to put in your contacts before using any skincare products or makeup on your hands or face. Even the smallest amount of moisturizer or makeup on your skin will be soaked up by the lens. It can make the lens feel uncomfortable and dry or cause the vision to be blurry.

Step One: get organized. You will need a clean, lint-free towel, multipurpose disinfecting or saline rinsing solution, and a mirror. Get your lenses set up with the right lens on your right, left lens on your left.

Step Two: practice how you’re going to hold your eyelids. The key to putting in contacts is to control your eyelids to keep your eye from blinking. Use the middle finger from your non-dominant hand to hold your upper eyelid and the middle finger from your dominant hand to hold your lower eyelid. You want to hold your eyelid right where the eyelashes come out and basically pin it against the bone of your eye socket. You will have no problems putting in your lenses if you can do that for both your upper and lower eyelid.

Step Three: Wash your hands!

Step Four: inspect your lens. You’re checking to make sure there is no debris on the lens, that the lens is not damaged, and that your lens is not inside out.

To check if your contact lens is inside out, use the “Taco Test.” When the lens is inside out, the edges flare out like the end of a trumpet, and if you try to roll the legs up like a taco, it won’t fold. When the lens is correct, the edges curve up like a bowl, and the lens will roll upon itself like a taco.

Step Five: put in your lenses. For this step, get into the habit of always doing right eye first, then left eye. This way, you won’t mix up your right and left lenses. Dry your hands with your lint-free towel, then put the lens on the tip of the index finger of your dominant hand. With the lens on your index finger, hold your eyelids just like your practiced in step two. Looking straight forward into the mirror, put the lens directly on your eye. Aim your index finger with the lens for the pupil (the black circle in the centre of your eye). You might not get it first try. If you don’t, that’s okay! Give the lens a rinse to make sure it’s clean, dry your hands, and try again. Once you get the lens on your eye, look up, down, left, and right to centre the lens. Then let your eyelids go and give a couple of blinks to ensure the lens is centred on your eye.

There you have it – putting in your contact lenses in four easy steps!

Contact lenses with modern lens materials are perfectly okay to be worn all day, every day. As promised, here are 3 tips to make sure that you get the most comfort out of your lenses:

  1. Wear the newest lens materials. Every version of every brand of contact lens materials gets more breathable and more comfortable. Ensure that your lenses are made from the most recent lens technology to get the most out of your contacts.
  2. Use compatible lens solutions. Make sure your lens solution is compatible with your lenses, and always use the same solution. Not all solutions are compatible with all lens materials, so the solution you use to clean and store your lenses affects your comfort during the day. Your eye doctor can help you find the disinfecting solution that’s most suitable for your brand of contacts.
  3. Use a re-wetting drop to get you through the day. Many artificial tear drops are suitable for contact lenses. Stay away from drops that contain lipid layer supplements or preservatives that can spoil the material of your lenses. Examples of easy to find artificial teardrops that are suitable for contacts are Systane Ultra(1) Hylo drops(2), or Refresh Optive Advanced(3)

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Written by Dr. Brandon Prete

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