What Really Happens When You Sleep In Your Contact Lenses?

Thu Aug 03 2017

You dislike wearing spectacles or your reading glasses?

If yes, then we believe that you alternatively wear contact lenses for corrective vision. If you wear contact lenses regularly, there is a strong chance you may have sometimes fallen asleep wearing those lenses. As a matter of fact, ophthalmologists highly disapprove the use of contact lenses while sleeping. However, the question is, why? What happens to your eyes if you sleep wearing your contact lenses?

Lack of Oxygen & Loss of Vision

The primary effect of sleeping with your contact lensesis Hypoxia. It is a state where the eye lacks oxygen. Like any other organ of the body, your eyes require oxygen for their proper functioning and also to remain healthy. When you are asleep, the transmission of oxygen to your eyes reduces because your eyelids are closed. Moreover, if you have ever slept with your contact lenses on, you must have noticed the redness and dryness of your eyes the next morning. It occurs because the plastic of the lens prevents the oxygen to reach to the cornea to a greater extent. The inadequate supply of oxygen to the eye causes various eye problems.

The most prominent eye condition which occurs due to chronic hypoxia is Corneal Neovascularization which eventually affects your vision.

Hence, a habit of sleeping wearing contact lenses can cause predominant loss of vision or even blindness.

Other Eye Problems

Other eye problems that occur due to sleeping with the contact lenses on are –

  • Eye Strain• Redness of Eye
  • Swelled Up Eyes
  • Pain
  • Irritations
  • Excessive sensitivity to lightand many more.

In some cases, sleeping with the contact lenses can causes the lens to tighten on the cornea. Thus, it causes slits and tiny cuts over the cornea and because of this the risk of developing eye infections and weak eyesight increases.Also, as per facts, a human being blinks its eyes three million times in a single year. That is a lot of blinking!

Thus, for those who wear contact lenses regularly and while sleeping, every time you blink, the eyelids brush against the contact lenses which causes little abrasions and cuts upon the eyelids. The constant rubbing against the plastic of the lens causes the inner lining of the eyelid to turn rough which prevents the eyelids from moistening and lubricating. Hence, it causes inflammation, dry eyes, redness, eye infections, etc.

Moreover, all of these eye conditions make your eyes wary of contact lenses. Thus, those who wear their contact lenses while sleeping are only risking their chance of wearing a contact lens never again. Do you know a friend or a family member who have the habit of wearing contact lenses while sleeping? Well share this article with them to aware them about the disadvantages of it. 


Article: What Really Happens When You Sleep In Your Contact Lenses?
Author: Dr Ritesh Narula   |   Aug 03 2017 | UPDATED 02:00 IST

*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.

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