Can contact lenses get stuck behind your eye?

If you are new to wearing contacts, the idea of putting something into your eye can seem a little alien at first. A common worry is that a lens will become dislodged, and potentially move behind the eye and become trapped.

The good news is that this is impossible. Even if your lens gets dislodged somehow, you will always be able to quickly and easily retrieve it from the surface of your eye or eyelid.

While the eye is certainly a very delicate and complex part of the body, it is still very well protected. Unwanted foreign bodies like dust or eyelashes are simply washed away by tears, or pushed against the conjunctiva, the soft pink tissue which completely surrounds the eyeball, until they find their own way out.

Contact lenses are built to aid in this process, offering a smooth even surface that allows those dust particles to easily fall away. But even if the lenses become dislodged, for example if you take a nasty fall during a sport, you can rest assured that the conjunctiva simply won’t allow the lens to fall behind the eyeball and out of reach.

If you're having difficulty in following any of these steps or your eye is becoming sore then you should go to your optician. They will be able to remove the lens swiftly with no pain and also will check your eye to ensure that there is no further damage.

How to remove a lens from your eye:

When you feel your contact lens has dislodged, it will probably have folded in half and will need to be removed carefully. You should follow these steps to ensure that you remove the lens from your eye:

  • After adding a few drops of contact lens solution to your eye, close your eye and massage the lid gently, as this may help to move the lens into a position where you can see it more easily in order to remove it.

  • In the event that the lens remains hidden behind you eyelid, repeat step 1, allowing time for the contact lens solution to soak the affected area. Massage your eyelid again to encourage the lens to return to its original position.

  • If gently encouraging the contact lens back to its proper position or into a place where it is easier to retrieve is unsuccessful, an alternative is to turn your eyelid inside out. You may find it easier to do this by enlisting a family member or friend to help.

To do this, place a cotton wool bud across the tips of your eyelashes and, while looking downwards, take hold of your eyelashes and turn your eyelid inside out with a rapid movement. Take care not to do this too forcefully as a gentle action will suffice. By tipping your head backwards you should be able to see the contact lens and you will be able to remove it from behind your eyelid.