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What Happens if I Put My Contact Lens Inside Out?

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Close-up of a woman's hand with a contact lens resting on her finger. She is out of focus in the background, smiling.

Contact lenses have become a popular alternative to traditional eyeglasses when it comes to treating myopia and other refractive errors. 

They offer a convenient way to have clear vision and allow you to avoid the cumbersome feel of eyeglasses, but contacts also require proper care and handling. However, when handling something so small, it can be easy to put them in incorrectly. What happens if you put your contact lens inside out?

While the long-term effects of wearing a contact lens inside out are minimal, it can cause some short-term consequences. An inside-out lens can be uncomfortable and affect your vision quality, causing blurry or distorted vision.

Fortunately, it can be easy to fix an inside-out lens. Your eye doctor can also offer advice on how to tell if a contact lens is inside out and help you get comfortable with the insertion and removal process.

How to Tell if a Contact Lens Is Inside Out

At first, it can be challenging to determine whether or not your contact lenses are inside out. However, with practice, it often becomes much easier. It helps to begin by inspecting the shape of the lens before placing them. 

Usually, a contact lens has a slight natural bowl shape, with the edges curving slightly inward to fit over your cornea. When inside out, the edges of the lens may appear flared out openly. If you aren’t able to tell if it’s oriented properly, you can also try curling it slightly like a taco. If it bends cleanly, it’s properly oriented—if the lens doesn’t form a smooth curve, it’s likely inside out.

Effects of Wearing Contacts Inside Out

Wearing contact lenses inside out can lead to a variety of side effects. It can lead to eye irritation, redness, and dryness—all indicators that there is something wrong. If you notice any irritation in your eye while wearing your contact lens, you should remove it as soon as you can.

An inside-out contact lens also won’t fit properly on your cornea. The lenses are shaped to fit over the surface of your eye, and when inverted, the lens will likely feel uncomfortable to you. Due to being oriented incorrectly, an inside-out lens can lead to blurry vision, distorted images, and may move around when you blink.

Close-up of a person washing their hands in a bathroom sink.

How to Fix an Inside-Out Contact Lens

If you believe that your contact lens is inside out, you should remove it immediately. Start by thoroughly washing your hands with soap and water to be sure they’re clean from any potential contaminants, then remove the lens.

Then, clean the lens with contact solution. Once cleaned, double-check the shape of the lens before placing it back in your eye. If you’ve placed it correctly, you should have clearer vision almost immediately with no side effects.

How to Avoid Putting Contacts Inside Out

Preventing yourself from an inside-out contact lens is essential for maintaining optimal eye health and comfort. It can help to make a point to follow the eye care routine recommended by your optometrist to avoid additional side effects.

Try to always handle and place your contact lenses in the same order to reduce the chances of potential confusion, and follow a habit of using the same hand every time for each eye. This can help prevent you from mixing up the lenses and lower your chances of placing them incorrectly.

It can be beneficial to use a marked lens case with a set slot for each lens. This can also help you avoid confusing the lenses between eyes. 

Caring for Your Contacts

Contact lenses are an excellent alternative to traditional eyeglasses, but that doesn’t mean they’re complication-free. By following a consistent routine for placing your lenses and storing them correctly, you can avoid the discomfort of an inside-out lens.

At Total Vision Solana Beach, we know how important comfort is when it comes to contact lenses. If you’re due for a contact lens fitting, schedule an appointment with us today, and let our team of experienced, caring professionals offer advice about your contact lenses!

Written by Total Vision

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