Many people prefer the use of contact lenses to correct their vision defects. The vast majority find in contact lenses a much more aesthetic and comfortable option than with conventional glasses, which can be annoying or interfere with the perception of the campor visual

However, wearing contact lenses can sometimes lead to red eyes, irritation, infections, and other complications. For this reason, it is important to note that if you have red eyes and wear contact lenses, you must be very careful with their hygiene and maintenance.  

En Área Oftalmológica Avanzada We explain the relationship between red eyes and contact lenses and how you can prevent this discomfort. 

red eyes contact lenses

Why can contact lenses cause red eyes?

A part of the population that wears contact lenses can suffer eye redness. Are contact lenses harmful to the eyes? No. In fact, contact lenses they are a sure way to compensate for vision problems. The problem can appear when we do not use them responsibly. 

Red eyes and contact lenses have a very close relationship. However, the usual thing is that no patient has discomfort, irritation or redness from using them. If this happens, which is rare, it is important go to the ophthalmologist to check eye health and visual system and the adaptation of contact lenses by the contactologist.

Many of our patients ask us what is the relationship between red eyes and contact lenses and we always explain the causal relationship what do you have and how avoid triggers:

Lack of hygiene 

From the first moment you decide to wear contact lenses to correct your vision, you must assume a strict commitment to hygiene. Whenever you are going to put or remove the lenses from your eyes, you should Wash your hands with antibacterial soap for at least 30 seconds. 

The hands have bacteria and are one of the main entry systems for pathogens into the ocular structure. Another aspect to take into account is that contact lenses should not be placed in the eyes if we have previously applied moisturizer, perfumes or any other product with our hands. 

Improper maintenance

In terms of hygiene, it is also important to remember that the lenses must be kept with the maintenance and cleaning solution recommended by the professional as well as changed daily. Likewise, we must not forget to wash and dry the case properly since it poses a risk if we clean the lenses and then store them in a contaminated container. 

In addition to taking care of the lenses, we must not share them and they must be stored correctly by changing the case every time we finish the maintenance liquid. Do not forget that to facilitate this habit the bottles always come with a new case.

Cleaning the lenses with distilled water or tap water is contraindicated.


Red eyes can be a sign of an eye allergy, such as allergic conjunctivitis. This condition appears when the body detects a threatening substance and reacts releasing histamine excessively.

One of the problems that cause eye allergies in contact lens wearers is that allergens can get trapped between the eye and the contact lens. This worsens the symptoms and prolongs the irritation. 

Use of harmful makeup or products

When we put on makeup, there may be remains of cosmetics on the ocular structure. This increases the risk of eye irritation, since when placing the lens with makeup, remains of it can be dragged into the eye causing irritation in the conjunctiva

Excess use of contact lenses

Contact lens abuse is one of the main causes of red eyes and eye irritation. When we wear contact lenses, it is important to respect the rest guidelines indicated by the specialist in clinical contactology. 

Except in the case that your specialist has prescribed continuous or permanent use of contact lenses, remember not to abuse them and, above all, no sleep with contact lenses on

eye redness and contact lenses

Diseases related to red eyes and misuse of contact lenses

Some eye diseases they can be prolonged or worse if you wear contact lenses during treatment. Let's know what they are:  


Wearing contact lenses during conjunctivitis (allergic, bacterial o viral) may mean that this disease lasts longer than normal.

Contact lenses, in addition to irritating the conjunctiva, can retain bacteria, allergens and other microorganisms that interfere with the treatment of this pathology. 


This is the inflammation of one or more layers of the cornea which can trigger the formation of corneal ulcers. The keratitis can put corneal health at risk. For this reason, it is important not to wear contact lenses with this condition until the ophthalmologist indicates otherwise. 


La endophthalmitis it is an eye infection that is considered a medical emergency. It is important not wearing contact lenses during treatment to prevent this infection from getting worse and putting vision at risk. 

Essential tips to prevent irritated and red eyes when wearing contact lenses

En Área Oftalmológica Avanzada We suggest that you use your lenses responsibly by putting these into practice tips:  

  • Keep a strict hygiene of your lenses and its case. 
  • Do not wear contact lenses during longer than recommended and discard them when they have expired. 
  • Never rub your eyes with dirty hands.
  • Apply artificial tears if you notice ocular dryness
  • It is not recommended to soak in the bathtub, the beach or the pool with the lenses on. 
  • Do not wash the lenses with tap water, use specific products. 
  • Don't sleep with your contact lenses on
  • Buy your lenses in a health establishment. Consult with your ophthalmologist and contactologist which are the best options on the market according to your case. 
  • If you spend many hours in front of the computer try to blink frequently. In this way you prevent dry eyes. 
  • Don't share your lenses
  • Clean makeup before going to sleep and make sure to remove any residue that may remain in Eyelids y tabs
  • Check your eye health with the ophthalmologist regularly and check, with the optometrist of the ophthalmological center, the graduation of your lenses to confirm that it has not changed.
  • Follow the guidelines of review with your contactologist to ensure a safe fitting of the lenses.
  • It is advisable to have a glasses to rest from wearing contact lenses

If you wear contact lenses and have red eyes, we urge you to make an appointment with one of our specialists in Área Oftalmológica Avanzada. We are happy to assist you and offer you a solution to your case.

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Red eyes and contact lenses. Prevent this nuisance with the right measures
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Red eyes and contact lenses. Prevent this nuisance with the right measures
Are contact lenses bad for the eyes? No. In fact, contact lenses are a safe way to correct vision. The problem is when we don't use them responsibly.
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Área Oftalmológica Avanzada
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