Eye Health

Updated 12 February 2015

How to remove your contact lenses

Once the contact lens is in the eye it can be removed only by shaking you head vigorously or sneezing with your eyes open, right? Wrong.

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Once the contact lens is in the eye it can be removed only by shaking you head vigorously or sneezing with your eyes open, right? Wrong.

First check each eye’s vision separately. You do this by covering the opposite eye with your hand and checking whether your vision is clear – in other words, checking that the lens is doing its job and in the right place.

  • Wash your hands with soap and water, rinsing them thoroughly;

  • Roll your eyes upwards, then pull the lower lid outwards and downwards with your middle finger;

  • Keeping your middle finger on the eyelid, place the tip of your index finger on the lower half of the contact lens;

  • Smoothly slide the contact lens down off the cornea, onto the white of the eye;

  • Use your thumb and index finger to compress the contact lens so that the seal that keeps it against the eye is broken. The lens should then fall forward naturally onto the fingers and can be removed.

  • It can now be cleaned and sterilized, or discarded, according to the instructions of your eyecare specialist or the lens manufacturer.
 

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Optometrist

Megan Goodman qualified as an optometrist from the University of Johannesburg and is currently practising at Tygerberg Academic Hospital in Cape Town. She has recently completed a Masters degree in Clinical Epidemiology at Stellenbosch University. She has a keen interest in ocular pathology and evidence based medicine as well as contact lenses.

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