Contact Lens Care

A Stuck Contact Lens in the Eye- Don’t Panic!

A contact lens stuck in the eye is a very common problem that almost all contact lens users experience some time or the other. In such cases, the user is unable to get hold of the contact lens. The lens may get stuck in the cornea or may have slipped off the cornea.

Contact lenses can get stuck in the eye if one sleeps wearing contacts that are not prescribed for extended or overnight wear. Sometimes dryness of the eyes may cause the contact lens to get stuck. Eye dryness may result from wearing contacts for a very long period of time. Contact lens stuck in the eye can lead to pain, discomfort and tearing of the eye. The efforts to remove the lens can cause corneal abrasion, thus leading to pain.

Before trying to remove the stuck lens, one must thoroughly wash hands with soap and water and wipe them dry with a clean towel. Pull the eyelid down using the index finger and look upward. Touch the lower edge of the lens with the tip of the finger and try to slide the lens downward. One may use re-wetting drops to avoid the eye from becoming dry.

For removing a hard lens, a plunger is available. It is an easy and effective way to get rid of a stuck hard lens. This device should be used only to touch the lens surface and not the eye. The cup of the remover is dampened and placed on the lens surface. The lens comes off into the plunger’s suction cup and can be conveniently removed.

However, if it is a soft contact lens stuck in the eye, it becomes more difficult to remove it from the eye. It can be pulled only with the help of the fingers. Open the eyelid wide enough with one hand and with the other hand’s index finger and thumb try to pull the lens. Often as the eye may be irritated, it may keep shutting, making it very difficult to get hold of the lens. In such a case, one may use re-wetting solution to keep the eye moistened.

Unlike the popular misconception, contact lenses cannot go behind the eye, so one need not panic. Most often, with a little patience and perseverance, one may succeed in pulling off a stuck lens. However, if the lens is not coming out and there is a lot of pain and discomfort, one must immediately see a doctor. In the meanwhile, re-wetting eye drops may be used to keep the eye lubricated.