Shoot! I feel asleep in my contacts again!
As long as it’s not a habit, you should be fine if you remember a couple of important things.
The first thing to remember is that your eyes get a lot drier at night and that contact is probably stuck very tightly to your eye. In addition to the dryness, there might also be some eye swelling which can cause the contact become very tight on the eye. So even though you are a perfect patient and are eager to get out of the contacts, please do not immediately rush to take the contact off because you run the risk of tearing off the top layer of your cornea along with the contact!
Ideally, use an artificial tear or re-wetting drop to rehydrate the contact which will loosen up the fit enough to safely remove the contact. If you are stuck without drops, just give your eyes 15-20 minutes to produce enough tears to rehydrate the contact naturally.
Your eyes will probably feel temporarily irritated even after the contacts are removed. If the irritation persists more than a few hours, or if your eyes are not feeling, seeing or looking fine, you might have a serious contact lens related complication that your eye doctor needs to see your right away for if you want the best possible outcome.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to be a chronic contact lens abuser for something bad to happen. It really may only take 1 night for an issue to develop. Let your doc examine you and make the call. Do not delay in seeking care as many contact lens related red eyes are time sensitive, and the sooner the treatment, the better the outcome.
So the key take away point to remember if you fall asleep in your contacts:
- Don’t panic. Relax and rehydrate your contacts before removing.
- If you eyes are not looking, seeing or feeling fine after you take out the contacts, let your eye doc prove everything is ok by doing an exam.
There will be a point in your life where this will happen. Keep these 2 tips in mind and things should work out for the best.
Park Slope Eye is located in Brooklyn, NY. For more info contact Justin Bazan, OD, the optometrist of Park Slope Eye, at Dr.Bazan@ParkSlopeEye.com or visit www.ParkSlopeEye.com Also, check us out on Yelp!, Twitter and FaceBook.