We decided to survey a bunch of our customers to see if we could come up with some sort of average answer to this question: How many hours a day can you wear contact lenses?
The average was 11 hours so we reckon the easy answer is 10-12 hours!
Want the not-so-easy answer……………..? Easy! (how does that work?)
And bigggggggg disclaimer…
There is a huge range of variables that can affect how many hours a day can you wear contact lenses. your eye care professional is by far the best person to tell you personally what your best contact lens wearing timeframe is.
We wondered if some responses were ‘improved’ somewhat because admitting to overwearing contact lenses is something that most of us contact lens wearers don’t like to own up to!
Here are three stories that we felt were the best to cover the range of responses we received.
Jane Falcon the ‘love em but hate em’ lens wearer
“I started wearing contact lenses in my mid-twenties. I took me ages to get over the thought of putting something in my eyes, so I resisted the urgings of my friends for years and stuck with glasses even though I hated them too.
Finally, one summer I decided I HAD to give them a try. The thought of going to the beach and having to wear my glasses was too much. I booked an appointment and headed in for my eye test. My optometrist couldn’t believe it when I told her I had finally decided to give contact lenses a try – she had been trying unsuccessfully to get me to wear them for years and now here I was walking in asking her for them!
The first moment the first contact lens touched my eye I was a flood of unstoppable tears, blinking and discomfort! It was exactly what I always thought it would be like and nearly gave up right there & then. But Susan my friendly optometrist persevered (I figured she had been through this plenty of times!) and after about 10 minutes, here I was looking at myself from a distance (1 metre) and seeing myself clearly without contact lenses for the first time since I was ten! Actually, it was a bit weird! And my eyes? Well they felt a bit mauled and there was definitely something in them now but hey I could see!
That night it took me about an hour to take them out. I was on the verge of panic several times but finally succeeded. The next day I couldn’t face the thought of trying to put them in myself so back I went to Susan and after a much shorter time I was looking at a glasses-less, much less red-eyed self again in the mirror! By that afternoon my eyes were definitely not feeling right and so back to Susan who changed my contact lenses to a different sort. They were much more comfortable, and I had a great evening including minimal time extracting the little beggars.
I had many other visits to Susan over the next few weeks & months. By now summer had long gone but I had got to love my unclutter face, so I was determined to continue with contact lenses.
Unfortunately, I’ve never quite got to the point where they are perfect.
I get a maximum of four hours use out of them in a day before I feel their presence and after six or more hours they are constantly irritating and my eyes get continually sorer. Possibly because I cannot stop myself from rubbing my eyes.
I wear dailies – ever since my second pair when Susan changed me from the original set.
I’ve must’ve tried every brand of daily contact lenses on the market but nothing gives me any better wearing experience than anything else.
My current brand is Truemoist daily lenses which I got a free trial when a friend recommended them to me.
How many hours a day can you wear contact lenses? I wear them only on weekends now and since doing this have noticed that I can generally get a little bit more time out of them, but never more than 5-6 hours maximum."
Kevin ‘what are contact lenses?’ Marrah
"When you asked me to write a story about how long I wear contact lenses for I thought I would get sued!
Yes its true I wear contact lenses way longer than I’m supposed to.
I think its because I have a bad memory but quite soon after I started wearing contact lenses my optometrist recommended me to wear night & day contacts. He said they could be worn non stop for 30 days and nights without needing to be taken out.
I think he did say something about taking them out every few days for a night while I was getting used to them but somehow I just never got around to it. I always intended to but never at quite the right time. Anyway I finally got such a bad conscience about it (my eyes were fine it was just my conscience) that I did take them out and put in a new pair the next day. I felt a twinge of regret though because the old pair was still going fine and the new ones didn’t feel any different. That was pretty much the story of the pack of 6 lenses. A conflict between a guilty conscience and economic regret at throwing away what I thought were perfectly good lenses!
The last set I definitely wore a bit longer than the other even (not being good at dates I couldn’t exactly say how long this was) but this was partly because I was worried about what my optometrist would say and was putting off my next visit to him.
Then an overseas trip came up and because I didn’t want to go overseas without spare contact lenses I decided I had better get another lot. Well it turned out that the pack of lenses that was supposed to last me three months had managed to last me for eight months!
Well I got my next box of contacts and headed off overseas full of good intentions. Unfortunately life got in the way again and the old ways soon crept in…
Understandably my optometrist was a bit worried and sat me down in his chair to check my eyes. I was expecting him to call 111 by the way he had reacted earlier but after a couple of minutes of poking around he announced that he couldn’t see any evidence of damage to my eyes as a result of over wearing my contact lenses by several months but DON’T EVER DO IT AGAIN!
And today? Hmmmm not much different I must confess. I’m married now and my wife definitely takes my optometrists side. Plus she makes up for my bad memory not just about contact lenses thankfully either. Otherwise you wouldn't have even got this email
How many hours a day can you wear contact lenses? Oh nothing less than 24 and an average of about 2 months to a set!
(another big disclaimer needed here: Kevin's story is for entertainment purposes only!) But if you are interested in the brand of lenses he wears, check out Night & Day brand contact lenses here
Doug Morgan ‘I’m just a normal guy’ lens wearer
(editors note: we choose Doug’s story because he really did seem to fit the ‘normal’ category best – thanks Doug!)
I hate glasses. That’s why I persuaded my parents to let me wear contact lenses. My sister already had them. I played rugby at school and was pretty blind without my glasses.
I first started with permanent contacts. They were quite thick and cost a lot. I was told they were supposed to last for two years. One got a slight tear in the side after about four months which irritated my eye but I knew I wouldn’t get another lens out of my parents so I got around the discomfort by swapping it to the other eye every now and again. It didn’t last long and I lost one. The optometrist gave me disposables after that. Monthlies I think. They were thinner, much more comfortable and only cost $15 a lens! I never looked back.
I put them in in the morning and take them out at night. Roughly 6am to 10pm. You asked me how many hours a day can you wear contact lenses? I'm sitting at 16.
I change them when I’m supposed to. Sometimes I sleep in them during the day.
If I fly long distances I always leave them in but in recent years have taken a small bottle of eye drops and this quickly gets rid of the dry scratchiness when you wake up in them.
I had an eye infection once but got over that. I think it was the contact lens solution, not the contacts.
I’ve tried many brands over the years. There doesn’t seem to be much difference between them.
My friends are starting to need reading glasses. I don’t quite yet but when I do I’m not sure what I’ll do yet. I still hate glasses but have heard that multifocal contact lenses don’t work very well. I think I’ll still give them a go. Hope this is what you were wanting me to talk about Steve? Kind regards, Doug.