Blurry contacts can happen for several reasons. There’s also a chance your contacts aren’t the issue—your vision could be blurry for reasons relating to your prescription or eye health. Or, it might be a simple misstep in your daily contact lens care.

In this guide, we’ll cover the most common culprits behind blurry vision for contact lens wearers, along with tips to get you seeing clearly again.

8 Reasons for Blurry Vision With Contacts

Infographic listing common causes and what to do for blurry contacts

1. Your Prescription Is Outdated

One of the most common culprits behind seemingly blurry contacts? Out-of-date prescriptions. Ensuring your prescription is accurate is one of the many reasons it’s important to have regular eye exams

Refractive errors progress naturally as we (and our eyes) age. Your eye doctor will be able to assess whether to change your prescription after a comprehensive exam.

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Time for an exam?

Our optometrists can help make everything crystal clear again.

2. Your Contacts Need Cleaning

If you have cloudy contacts, they might simply need to be cleaned a little better. To test this theory, see if you still have blurry vision when you wear your glasses. If you have blurry vision with contacts but not glasses, the issue may be with the cleanliness of your contacts.

Luckily, cleaning shouldn’t take more than a few minutes each night. If you’re new to contacts (or would simply like a refresher), we’ve got an easy-to-follow guide to cleaning contacts

If cleaning contacts isn’t your thing, you may want to consider switching to disposable daily contacts. With dailies, you can just take them out at the end of the night, pop in a fresh pair the next day, and you’re good to go.

3. Improper Use Left Deposits on Your Lenses

Some activities and contacts simply don’t mix. 

For instance, sleeping in your contacts can cause protein deposits to build up on your lenses. And wearing your contacts in water is another big no-no. Swimming or showering while wearing contacts can allow bacteria and other contaminants present in water to penetrate your lenses.

Any of this buildup on your contact lenses can not only cause blurry vision but also put you at great risk for eye infection. Be sure to follow all best practices when wearing and handling your contact lenses.

4. Your Contacts Are Dry

Maybe you forgot to store your contacts in solution overnight. Or perhaps you had a late night and wore your contact lenses longer than usual. The bottom line is that dry contacts can exacerbate dry eye symptoms, including blurry vision. 

Want a simple test? Try blinking a bunch. If your vision improves a little bit, it may be a sign your contacts are too dry. 

You can try rehydrating your contacts in their storage case filled with solution. Or, you can try rewetting them with eye drops made for use with contacts

5. Your Contact Lenses Aren’t the Correct Fit

Not all brands of contacts fit exactly the same. That’s why part of your initial contact lens exam has to do with fitting. Your eye doctor will take many characteristics of your eye into consideration when prescribing a specific brand, such as the curve of your cornea and the size of your pupils and irises.

People with astigmatism have an uneven curvature to their corneas that affects how contacts fit. Toric lenses are contacts for astigmatism that are specifically designed to fit the cornea’s unusual curve.

If you have new contacts, blurry vision might relate to how they fit. Be sure to reach out to your eye doctor if you’re experiencing blurriness with your new contacts.

6. Your Contacts Have Shifted or Weren’t Inserted Correctly 

If your vision seems blurry with your contacts in, it may be a sign that something’s off with their orientation. Something may have gone awry when you were putting in your contact lenses, or they may have shifted off center. 

  • Inside-out contacts: Contacts are tiny and flexible, so it’s easy for them to get accidentally inverted. Take a look at our handy guide if you need help: How to Tell if Your Contact Lens Is Inside Out.
  • Right lens, left eye: If each eye has a different prescription, blurry vision may mean that you’ve put the lens in the wrong eye.
  • Shifting lenses: Your lenses may have shifted position in your eye, leaving them off-center. Sometimes fixing this problem can be as easy as taking your contacts out and putting them back in again. 

7. Your Eyes Are Adjusting to a New Prescription

If your contacts are blurry and they are relatively new, your eyes may simply be adjusting to the new prescription. This is natural and can take up to 10–12 days. However, if your blurry vision persists, don’t hesitate to contact your optometrist. 

8. An Underlying Condition May Be Responsible

If none of the reasons discussed so far seem relevant, the problem might not be your contacts at all. Sometimes, underlying eye conditions or medical issues can be responsible for blurry vision, so it’s important to discuss it with your eye doctor.

Here are a few conditions that can sometimes be responsible for blurry vision:

  • Dry eyes: Dry eye syndrome occurs when your eyes can’t produce enough tears to stay hydrated. This can happen with or without contacts and can cause many symptoms, including blurred vision.
  • Eye infection: Blurry vision can be a symptom of eye infections, such as pink eye (conjunctivitis) or keratitis.
  • Floaters: Eye floaters can develop with age and appear like dark specks, strings, or cobwebs that drift around in your field of vision.
  • Macular degeneration: This eye disease causes blurred central vision because of age-related damage to the retina.
  • Diabetic retinopathy: Type 1 or type 2 diabetes can damage the blood vessels in the retina of your eye. Blurry vision is an early symptom of this condition.
  • Cataracts: This condition causes the eye’s natural lens to become cloudy. It can occur naturally with age, but can also be caused by an eye injury.
  • Glaucoma: This eye disease causes damage to the optic nerve, resulting in a gradual loss of vision.

The Go-To Solution for Blurry Vision: Your Eye Doctor

No matter the reason, if you’re experiencing blurry vision with contacts, you should speak with your eye doctor. They have the expertise to uncover the root cause and determine if any changes are needed for your contact lens prescription. If the reason for your blurred vision goes beyond your contacts, they can also recommend the right treatment for you.


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