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Why are your eyes watery with contacts

Eye Health

structure image Why are your eyes watery with contacts


Even though contact lenses are convenient, they can also cause minor inconveniences. Itchy or red eyes are the most common annoyances. If you wear contacts, chances are you’ve experienced this on more than one occasion.

Watery eyes from contacts are a pretty common occurrence, although uncomfortable. There are several reasons your contacts are making your eyes water. Once you figure out what is causing the problem, you can fix it.

Here are the most common causes for watery eyes from contacts:

Your contacts are dirty

Dirty lenses are by far the most common reason your eyes are watery after inserting your contacts. It’s crucial to your eye health to clean your contacts properly, including your case, at the end of each day to remove buildup from dirt, pollen, or makeup. Use fresh contact solution every night—no top-ups.

You didn’t wash your hands properly

Making sure your hands are thoroughly clean before inserting your contact lenses is a must. Wash your hands with soap and water and dry with a lint-free towel minimizing the chance of transferring bacteria to your lens.

You’re having an adverse reaction to your contact solution

Even if you have been using the same brand for years, you can develop sensitivity to contact solution, causing your eyes to react while leaving them watery and uncomfortable. Try a solution for sensitive eyes and speak to your optometrist if it keeps happening.

You have allergies

Spring and fall are challenging for contact lens wearers. Wearing contacts during allergy season can cause watery and red eyes as pollen, dust, and other irritants can be trapped by contact lenses and kept from being flushed naturally by blinking. But it doesn’t have to be due to the seasons. It can be as simple as moving into new housing, a friend with a new pet, or starting a new job.

You have an eye infection

Watery, burning eyes may indicate an eye infection or pink eye. Remove your contacts and visit your eye doctor immediately. Stop using your contacts until your eyes are better, and start with fresh lenses.

Your contacts don’t fit

Perhaps your contacts don’t fit. It can restrict the oxygen flow in and out of your cornea or move around the eye and irritate it. If you suspect you may have contact lenses that don’t fit you properly, visit your eye doctor to get a proper fitting.

Your contacts are damaged

A damaged or dried-out lens can irritate your eye. Even the tiniest tear will leave your eyes watery and uncomfortable. If you suspect your contact is damaged, it’s best to throw it away and get a new one.

How do I stop my eyes from watering with contacts?

Your eyes can tear up and water at any time. More often than not, environmental factors are the cause. Changes in the humidity, perfumes, and hair spray are a few factors that can cause your eyes to water.

Make sure to follow the best practices for cleaning, storing, and replacing your contact lenses, and make frequent check-up visits with your eye doctor to keep your eyes healthy and happy.

In the meantime, check out our Possible Causes and Solutions to Contact Lens Irritation to learn more.