Common sense prevails in most things related to contact lenses. Try to get into the habit of working with the same lens first to avoid any confusion. Remove the lens from the case and examine it to be sure that it is clean, clear and free of any nicks or tears. If the lens appears damaged, do not use it. You can now inspect the lens to see it has turned inside out by placing it on your forefinger and checking its profile.
The lens should assume a natural, curved, bowl-like shape. If the lens edges tend to point outward (like a soldier’s tin hat), the lens is inside out (see image). Another method is to gently squeeze the lens between the thumb and forefinger, the edges should turn inward. If the lens is inside out, the edges will turn slightly outward. Once you have verified the lens is the correct orientation you are ready to insert by following these steps:
1. Place the lens on the tip of your forefinger.
2. Place the middle finger of the same hand close to your lower eyelashes & pull down the lower lid.
3. Use the forefinger or middle finger of the other hand to lift the upper lid.
4. Place the lens on the eye, do not press it on. Try to make sure that the lens goes into the eye and does not get caught on your eyelashes. You may find it helpful to look into a mirror whilst you do this.
5. Before blinking look up & then look down, to gently massage the air from behind the lens.
6. Gently release the lids and blink. The lens will centre automatically.
A lens which is on the cornea will very rarely be displaced onto the white part of the eye during wear. This, however, can occur if insertion and removal procedures are not performed properly or if you excessively rub your eyes during lens wear. To centre a lens, follow either of these simple procedures:
● Close your eyelids and gently massage the lens into place through the closed lids.
● Gently manipulate the lens onto the cornea while the eye is open, using light pressure on the eyelids.
CAUTION: Always be sure the lens is on the cornea before attempting to remove it. Determine this by covering the other eye. If vision is blurred, the lens is either on the white part of the eye or it is not on the eye at all.
Soft Lens Specifics
Removal by the drag method:
1. Look up and gently pull down the lower eyelid.
2. Place the forefinger of the other hand on the very edge of the contact lens.
3. Repeatedly drag the lens slowly down towards the lower eye lid. The aim is to push the lens into the fold of the lower lid where it meets the eyeball the lens can go no further and, therefore, will fold and flop out of your eye.
Removal by the pinch method:
1. Look up, slide the lens to the lower part of the eye using the forefinger.
2. Gently pinch the lens between the thumb and forefinger.
3. Remove the lens.
RGP Lens Specifics
Insertion of RGP lenses follow the steps above as for soft lens insertion this time making sure that the lens is inserted directly on the centre of the cornea. If this is not the case the follow the instructions above for centrating the lens on the cornea using the eyelids.
Removal of rigid gas permeable lenses can easily be removed by opening your eye wider than the lens diameter then pulling the corner of your eyelid towards the top of your ear then blinking. Be careful as the lens is likely to shoot out of your eye. It is best practice to cup your hand below your eye whilst your do this. If this method does not work you can place the two index fingers of each hand on your upper & lower lid respectively and gently squeeze them together effectively pushing the eyelids underneath the edges of the lens. The lids should push the lens out of your eye
Soft Contact Lens handling courtesy of Acuvue Contact Lenses