Most contact lens wearers may have fallen asleep while wearing their contact lenses at one time or another, but that doesn’t mean it’s a safe practice. If you’re planning to stay overnight somewhere, it’s of course best to take a contact lens case and solution with you. But what do you do when it’s time to go to sleep and you find yourself in a place without your cleaning liquid or lens case?
Unless you’re using extended wear lenses that are designed specifically for this purpose, you shouldn’t leave the lenses in for the night. It might even be better to take the lenses out and put them in a glass of water—that is, if you can find your way home in the morning without them, as you definitely need to disinfect them very thoroughly before wearing them ever again.
If you go to sleep without removing your soft contact lenses, your eyes might be very dry in the morning. The contact lenses may be stuck and, in the worst case scenario, you will not be able to see anything clearly. The most important thing is to remain calm. It’s a frightening experience to find oneself blinded all of a sudden, but the condition should be only temporary.
Whatever you do, do not try to remove the lenses forcefully, as this might tear the cornea and lead to some serious problems! Instead, drop some suitable contact lens liquid or even pure water into the eyes and wait a couple of minutes for it to soften the lenses, which should then come out easily. After this experience, it’s best to wear eyeglasses for a while to give the eyes a rest, and to see an eyecare professional to make sure no damage has been done.
How to Prevent Problems in the Future?
If your lenses have stuck even once, you will understand the importance of using lenses that are specifically designed for overnight wear. They are extra moist and can be safely worn day and night. Ask your optician for details!