“Is it OK to wear contact lenses when I have a red eye?”

Posted on June 4, 2012 · Posted in Contact Lenses, Eye Health

The white part of my eye has a red spot on it that won’t go away.

An interesting topic showed up on Quora a few days ago regarding the use of contact lenses while the user was experiencing a red eye.  In a nutshell, the question was whether or not it’s OK to wear contacts with a red eye.

I think a more important question to answer is “Why is the eye red?”.  The list of potential causes of red eyes is quite long and includes infectious and inflammatory conditions requiring medical attention.  Without identifying the source of the redness and/or root of the problem, it is impossible to answer the question of contact lens safety.

Think of it this way:  the eye tends to be a hypochondria-free organ.  If there is pain, redness, light-sensitivity, etc., there is generally a reason why.  Introducing a medical device such as a contact lens to a potentially unhealthy eye simply doesn’t make sense.  The best advice for this person (or anyone experiencing a similar quandary) is to see their eye care professional for evaluation.  Based on clinical findings, an appropriate treatment and/or management plan can be established to get you back on the road to healthy and happy contact lens wear.

As always, if you have questions post a comment below and let’s discuss them.

Follow Brett Paepke on Quora