Having a regular eye exam is essential for maintaining good vision. For contact lens wearers, it’s also important to have their lenses regularly examined and replaced by an optometrist or ophthalmologist.
Recently, a doctor successfully removed a pair of contact lenses that had been stuck in the patient’s eyes for 28 years. The remarkable story of how the lenses were discovered and removed is one that will surely leave contact lens wearers thinking twice about when to replace their lenses.
What is Contact Lenses
Contact lenses are thin, curved pieces of plastic that are placed directly on the eye to correct vision problems. By correcting refractive errors, contact lenses can improve the clarity of a person’s vision. They also provide an alternative to glasses if someone is not comfortable wearing them.
Need for Professional Assistance in Removing Contact Lenses
Removing contact lenses can be tricky, and it is important to seek professional assistance to ensure the health of the eyes. If contact lenses are not removed properly, it can lead to eye irritation or infection. It is also important to replace contact lenses regularly, as they may accumulate toxins or germs over time that can harm the eyes.
Preparing for Contact Lens Removal
Wash Hands Thoroughly
It is important to wash hands thoroughly before attempting to remove contact lenses. This will help reduce the risk of introducing germs and bacteria into the eyes and causing infection.
Handwashing should be done with an antibacterial soap and warm water, ensuring that all areas of the hands are covered. It’s also a good idea to wear disposable gloves during contact lens removal, as they can protect the eyes from any bacteria that may be present on the hands.
Find a Well-Lit and Comfortable Space
It is important to find a well-lit and comfortable space when removing contact lenses. This will help make it easier to locate the lenses and ensure they are removed properly. A bathroom or bedroom with good lighting is usually ideal, as these spaces are less likely to have allergens that can cause eye irritation.
Gather Necessary Tools (Mirror, Tissue, Solution)
Before attempting to remove contact lenses, it is important to gather the necessary tools. This includes a handheld mirror, tissue and lens solution. The mirror can be used to help locate the lens in the eye and make sure that it comes off properly. Tissues are needed to wipe away any debris or germs that may be present on the lens. Finally, contact lens solution can be used to help lubricate the eye and make it easier to remove the lenses.
Step-by-Step Guide to Contact Lens Removal by a Doctor
Step 1: Position the Mirror and Sit Up Straight
The first step in removing contact lenses is to position a handheld mirror under the chin of the patient and sit up straight. This will help give the doctor a good view of the eyes, allowing them to locate the contact lens easily.
The patient should also tilt their head back slightly, as this can make it easier for the doctor should also avoid touching or rubbing their eyes during the procedure.
Step 2: Use Solution to Moisturize the Eyes
The second step in contact lens removal is to use a contact lens solution to moisturize the eyes. This will help make it easier for the doctor to remove the lenses. The solution should be applied directly on the eye, making sure that it covers the entire area. Once the solution has been applied, it should be given a few minutes to soak in.
Step 3: Gently Hold the Eyelids and Look Upward
The third step in contact lens removal is to gently hold the eyelids open and look upward. The patient should keep their eyes pointed up towards the ceiling, so that the doctor can easily see and access the contact lenses. The doctor will then use their other hand to grasp the outer edge of the lens and gently pull down.
Step 4: Pinch the Contact Lens with Clean Fingertips
Once the contact lens is visible, the doctor will use clean fingertips to pinch it and carefully pull it away from the eye. It is important to ensure that the contact lens is removed in one piece, as this will reduce the risk of irritation or infection. If any pieces are left behind, they should be removed with tweezers or a lens extraction tool.
Step 5: Slowly Slide the Contact Lens Off the Eye
Once the contact lens has been pinched away from the eye, it should be slowly slid off. The doctor should use a gentle but firm pressure to ensure that no pieces are left behind and that the lens slides off without causing any discomfort to the patient. The doctor may need to adjust their grip on the lens if it is difficult to remove.
Step 6: Repeat the Process for the Other Eye
Step 6: Repeat the Process for the Other Eye. Once the first contact lens has been removed, the same process should be repeated for the other eye. This includes applying the solution to moisturize the eye, gently holding the eyelids open and looking upward, pinching the lens with clean fingertips, and then slowly sliding it off. It is important to make sure that both eyes are thoroughly checked to ensure cleaned before replacing the contact lenses.
Common Mistakes to Avoid during Contact Lens Removal
Rushing the Process and Applying Excessive Force
Rushing the Process: It is important to take your time and be patient when removing contact lenses. Rushing the process can lead to errors and potentially cause discomfort or infection. Taking things slow will ensure that no pieces of the lens are left behind, and that the entire lens is removed in one piece.
Cleaning or Handling the Contact Lenses Inappropriately
Cleaning or Handling the Contact Lenses Inappropriately: Contact lenses must be handled with care in order to reduce the risk of infection and irritation. Before handling contact lenses, it is important to wash hands thoroughly and avoid touching any other objects. This includes not letting hair, dust particles or cosmetics come into contact with the lenses. Once removed from their packaging, the lenses should be placed directly on the eye.
Neglecting Regular Check-ups with an Eye Care Professional
Neglecting Regular Check-ups with an Eye Care Professional: It is important to have regular check-ups with an eye care professional, even if the patient does not experience any problems with their vision. This will allow the doctor to ensure that the contact lenses are fitting correctly and that there are no problems such as dryness or irritation. If left untreated, these conditions can lead to further vision problems and even permanent damage.
Advantages of Having Contact Lenses Removed by a Doctor
Expertise in Handling Different Types of Contact Lenses
Having a doctor remove contact lenses can be beneficial, as they have the expertise and experience in handling different types of contact lenses. They are familiar with the various materials used in contact lens production, and know how to safely handle them. Doctors will also be able to troubleshoot any issues that arise during removal and may even be able to recommend an alternative solution.
Minimizing the Risk of Eye Infections or Injuries
Eye infections and injuries can result from improper contact lens removal. To reduce the risk of infection or injury during contact lens removal, it is important to clean the eye area thoroughly before attempting to remove the lenses. Clean fingertips should be used to pinch the lens away from the eye without applying too much pressure. The entire lens should be removed in one piece, with no pieces left behind. Using a tweezer or sharp object to remove contact lenses is not recommended.
Ensuring Proper Disposal or Reuse of Contact Lenses
It is important to properly dispose or reuse contact lenses in order to reduce the risk of infection and irritation. If disposing of the contact lenses, they should not be thrown in the garbage, but instead placed in a sealed container and taken to an optometrist for proper disposal. For those wishing to reuse their contact lenses, the lenses should be cleaned and disinfected with fresh solution before reuse.
Taking the time to properly remove contact lenses is essential in order to prevent any discomfort, infection, or eye injuries. It is important to take care when handling and cleaning contact lenses, and regular check-ups with an eye care professional are recommended.
Having a doctor remove contact lenses can be beneficial as they have the expertise in handling different types of lenses, and can help minimize the risk of infection or injury. Proper disposal or reuse of the lenses is also important in order to reduce the risk of further issues.