What Happens If I Fall Asleep With My Lenses In?
It is no secret among all contact lens wearers that it is advisable to remove them at bedtime. Protect yourself from the rude awakening, because according to the Australian scientists, there is a 6.5 times higher risk of corneal inflammation in people sleeping while wearing contact lenses.1
4 Facts You Won't Believe Are True
- Scientists interviewed 1,618 contact lens wearers aged 12–17 years and found that 85% have at least one risky habit
- 44% visit less than once a year their Ophthalmologist
- 30% sleep with contact lenses, while up to 6 times higher risk of infection
- 27% wear their contact lenses while swimming, although they are very susceptible to bacteria and germs2
What happens if I doze off?
It all depends on how long you sleep. If, for example, you regularly fall asleep on the bus on your way home, or take a nap (15–45 minutes), you risk nothing. You might just have blurred vision and dry eyes for a short time as a result.
However, if you fall asleep in the evening with your contacts on and therefore they stay in your eyes all night, it could be a bit more problematic. Therefore, the type of contact lenses you wear can make the difference.
Hydrogel-silicone lenses allow more oxygen to the cornea, so your eyes probably won’t be too sore. But if you wear hydrogel lenses, you’re eyes will most likely be red and burning when you wake up, and you may even damage your cornea.
Sleeping in contact lenses increases the risk of eye infection by 6 times.
The state of your eyes before falling asleep can affect you in different
ways. If you use the contacts a few hours before going to bed, then the next
day's irritation will be lower than if you have been wearing them all day. The
contact lenses have accumulated impurities over the many hours of usage (such as
dust) and unclean contact lenses are a veritable paradise for microorganisms and
allergens. Protect your eyes from inflammation, because you might risk a
What should I do if I left my contact lenses in overnight?
Of course it is not ideal if the contact lenses were in overnight, but if this should happen, we recommend you to follow this rules:
- Do not remove the contact lens immediately after waking up, even if it feels very uncomfortable.
- Try to blink enough to make the lens hydrated and softer through the tear fluid.
- If the contact lens still does not lift, use moisture drop for the eye. Alternatively, you can also use contact lens solution or clear water to moisturize the eye.
- If the contact lens is now soft enough, you can take it out carefully.
- Try to delay the insertion of new contact lenses as much as possible. If you have glasses, use them for that day.
- If you still do not feel well after a few hours, contact an Ophthalmologist immediately.
- Does that happen to you very often? Then it would be best to switch to other contact lenses, which are better suited to your habits.
Sleep better with THESE contacts
So if you’re the kind of person that likes to get stuck into a good TV program, or book while in bed and sometimes find yourself drifting off, continuous lenses are what your dreams are made of! As their name suggests, those extended wear contact lenses are designed to be worn all the time – even while you sleep. They are made of special silicone-hydrogel material and allow sensitive eyes to get enough oxygen while sleeping.
The extended wear contact lenses are available as two weeks- or monthly-lenses. After this wearing time, the lenses should be disposed of. The contact lenses, such as the ones from Biofinity from our online shop will surely delight you. But please always pay attention to a careful cleansing of the contact lenses!
Eye Openers: Your Stories
Have you ever slept with your contacts in? What happened? Let us know in the comments box below. A problem shared is a problem halved!
1: American Academy of Ophthalmology
2: AAP News