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theninjkaymarie
04-14-2014, 07:42 AM
I have a character who is kidnapped, and he is blindfolded and locked in a room for six months before he escapes. His contacts are left in for the entire time, and the blindfold is not removed for that amount of time. How would this affect his vision both short-term and long term?

Would he be able to see enough to get into a car and drive it down a rural road with practically no traffic before medical attention? (NOTE: His prescription is very low, and without his contacts he would be able to complete this task, other than reading road signs) What sort of medical treatment would be required to heal his eyes? Would they be permanently damaged?

Sunflowerrei
04-14-2014, 07:50 AM
I'm not sure about that length of time, but I can tell you that without eye drops, those contacts are going to be very uncomfortable. I doubt he'd be able to see much out of them,depending on which type of contact lens he uses.

I've slept with my contacts in--just an hour or two--and when I woke up, the contacts were dry, my eyes were red, and taking the contacts out was an interesting procedure because they felt stuck to my eyeballs.

Also, if he's been blindfolded as well, his eyes are going to have trouble adjusting to light again.

emily
04-14-2014, 07:53 AM
My cousin and sister have both left their contacts in for multiple days and developed eye infections. So I imagine your character's eyes would be in pretty bad shape after six months.

Christabelle
04-14-2014, 09:27 AM
I sleep in my contacts for weeks at a time. No infections in 20 years of that (knock on wood). However, I use eye drops multiple times a day.

My theory is that if he has soft contacts, they would probably fall out well before he was released. Even with the blindfold on, he could probably blink them out when they started drying up. Mine fall out on their own sometimes after I wake up and before I put in my eye drops or if my eyes get especially dry during the day. I rewet them and pop them back in.

If your MC can see without them, just have them fall out and forget about them ... unless you need to damage his eyes and then give him an infection like Emily's suggestion. :)

JustKia
04-14-2014, 10:25 AM
Hubby used to wear strong prescription contacts (then he had laser surgery) and he would leave them in for many weeks at a time. He never used eye drops or synthetic tears, didn't take them out in the morning to rinse them and in the best part of 20 years doing that he only had two problems - 1. he developed rust spots on one lens (yes rust!) and 2. he had one lens that randomly flipped round the back of his eye while he was watching tv and had to go to hospital where they popped his eye out, whipped the lens off, popped his eye back in and sent him home with the instruction to wear his glasses for a few days instead.
I would think after 6 months in a blindfold there would be more trouble with his eyes adjusting to light. The lenses may or may not have come out of his eyes by then by blinking under the blindfold - you could choose whichever fits best for you there. Infection or not - again whichever works best for your story.

Old Hack
04-14-2014, 11:03 AM
Eye infections would be a distinct possibility.

Also, do some reading up on how the blood vessels in the eye respond to contact lenses: I was told by an optician that extended wear of soft contact lenses led to blood vessels extending into parts of the eye where they don't usually appear, and obstructing vision.

cornflake
04-14-2014, 11:05 AM
The contact thing I think partly probably depends on the type of contact and partly doesn't (and partly I'm so traumatized by Kia's story I'm typing all confused).

I think your problem is going to be twofold - I don't know that any contacts would be ok for six months, and I don't know that regular eyes would be ok under a blindfold for six months and then suddenly exposed to light and information. I don't know like, clinically, at all, but it doesn't sound logical to me that someone could be blindfolded for six months, have no eye issues, have the blindfold removed and see fine.

With contacts, I think you'd be further fucked - with no water ever getting near the eyes and the eyes likely mostly closed and unable to be touched? I can't imagine.

It just doesn't sound likely on many fronts.

Old Hack
04-14-2014, 11:23 AM
I once had to wear an eye-patch for a week, and when I took it off I was so unused to light I could almost see in the dark. Ordinary daylight was painful. The effects wore off very quickly, but they were extraordinary, and I was surprised that they were so obvious after just a week of the eye-patch.

Putputt
04-14-2014, 11:36 AM
Argghhhh, reading the OP alone gave me heart palpitations. I'm like Sunflowerrei, when I used to nap with my contacts in, taking them out was a challenge because they were stuck to my eyeballs. I'd have to put some eye drops in before I could pop them out. But sometimes, when they got really dry, I could blink in a certain way and they'd pop out.

Just fyi, when I used to wear contacts, I sometimes thought, "Oh man, what if I was kidnapped and I couldn't get my contacts out!!" I'm glad this question is being asked, even though a couple of the answers made me squick. :D

LAgrunion
04-14-2014, 11:47 AM
Hard or soft contacts? Soft ones are more comfortable to wear, especially for extended durations. I can't imagine wearing hard contacts for six months without serious pain.

There are soft contacts that are designed for you to wear continuously for a month. Not sure if there are longer ones.

When I wear my contacts for a long time, my eyes get dry, especially if I'm tired. Dry contacts are more likely to tear. One time I developed scratches on my cornea because I had a barely visible tear in a contact. The cornea healed eventually after I stopped wearing the contact. So six months of wearing contacts will probably increase the risk of corneal damage in addition to the risk of infections.

theninjkaymarie
04-14-2014, 08:51 PM
Thanks for all of the responses! I will clarify, they are soft contacts, and probably the type that you only wear during the day and are replaced every two weeks to a month.

Little Anonymous Me
04-14-2014, 09:11 PM
It will also depend on your character's eyes. Frex, I have extremely dry eyes, and when I wore contacts, going more than a few hours without eyedrops felt like I'd shoved glass against my corneas, and the contacts would practically vacuum seal themselves onto my eyeballs. I could never get them out without a lot drops--I'm really jealous of everyone who said they can blink them out. :tongue I also developed a very serious eye infection because my eyes were too dry for the contacts, which is something your character would be at risk for.

EarlyBird
04-14-2014, 09:24 PM
I haven't worn contacts in a while (thank you laser vision correction!) but wearing them for six months straight would cause some serious problems. I once got scratched corneas from wearing lenses too long and it was painful! Also, if left in too long (days or weeks, depending on the lens type), the lenses would stick to my eye balls and I'd have to put in lubricating drops to loosen them enough to remove them. Oh, and occasionally my lenses would slide out of place and to up underneath my upper lid. Waaay up there! Not comfortable.

Seriously, though, I think wearing lenses for six months straight would lead to permanent problems, maybe even blindness. It makes my eyes hurt just thinking about it.

onesecondglance
04-14-2014, 09:38 PM
Argghhhh, reading the OP alone gave me heart palpitations. I'm like Sunflowerrei, when I used to nap with my contacts in, taking them out was a challenge because they were stuck to my eyeballs. I'd have to put some eye drops in before I could pop them out. But sometimes, when they got really dry, I could blink in a certain way and they'd pop out.

Just fyi, when I used to wear contacts, I sometimes thought, "Oh man, what if I was kidnapped and I couldn't get my contacts out!!" I'm glad this question is being asked, even though a couple of the answers made me squick. :D

Yeah, ick! Thank goodness for laser surgery :)

JustKia
04-14-2014, 11:10 PM
(and partly I'm so traumatized by Kia's story I'm typing all confused).
Sorry :tongue

Trebor1415
04-15-2014, 12:38 AM
Why is it important that his contacts be left in? Do you specifically want him to suffer an eye infection or something similiar? Are you just trying to show that they didn't care for him well?

If you've established the character wears contacts, unless you specifically want him to have eye problems related to the contacts staying in, I'd just have them fall out at some point.

shaldna
04-15-2014, 01:34 PM
What sort of contacts? Had, soft or stay in? You can get contacts that you wear continuously for 30 days - including sleeping. Hard lenses yyou'll need to tke out after about 6-8 hours, soft lenses you can probably et 2 4 hours without too much Complication.

I have soft lenses and have, in the past, often gone to bed with them still in. My eyes were tired, dry and itchy when I woke up though. A friend did some seriouaslepp with her hard lenses in though.

Six months without taking them out though, you are looking at some serious issues.

shaldna
04-15-2014, 01:40 PM
What sort of contacts? Had, soft or stay in? You can get contacts that you wear continuously for 30 days - including sleeping. Hard lenses yyou'll need to tke out after about 6-8 hours, soft lenses you can probably et 2 4 hours without too much Complication.

I have soft lenses and have, in the past, often gone to bed with them still in. My eyes were tired, dry and itchy when I woke up though. A friend did some seriouaslepp with her hard lenses in though.

Six months without taking them out though, you are looking at some serious issues.

Torgo
04-15-2014, 01:41 PM
The lenses will dry out and become very uncomfortable within a day or so. It might well be possible to blink them out, even under the blindfold. If they stay in for six months? I'd say you're looking at extremely serious consequences. Blindness would be a real possibility.

WriteMinded
04-15-2014, 07:05 PM
I know contact lenses have changed somewhat, but I have a friend who left his contacts in for . . . too long. I'd be guessing if I gave an actual time frame, but I know it wasn't a matter of more than a month. They had to be (surgically?) removed. He nearly lost his vision completely.

If your guy isn't going to be blind when he gets free, you are going to have to find some way for him to get those things out.

chompers
04-15-2014, 08:03 PM
Wow, these stories... And I thought I was bad to leave them in overnight. doesn't it concern them? months?? dang.

yes, it can lead to blindness. my dr always got on my case, even though I usually took them out daily, but I never gave enough time to let my eyes breathe. Like almost literally. contacts block oxygen from going to the eyes (my dr always just looked at how much the blood vessels (I think that's it, cant remember for sure right now) crowded the cornea. or was it retina? soething like that. they wanted oxygen.

there's an acuvue contacts now that allows extended wear, but even then it's only like a week or something like that. (incidentally my dr developed them) and it allows oxygen to flow better. [for disclaimer purposes, I do not wear acuvue.]

in some rare cases, there are people who are able to wear contacts for extended lengths of time and have no effects on them at all. some genetic thing that makes it possible.

jennontheisland
04-16-2014, 01:56 AM
How would this affect his vision both short-term and long term?

Long term damage to the point of blindness is extremely possible. For short term: see long term


Would he be able to see enough to get into a car and drive it down a rural road with practically no traffic before medical attention?
No.


What sort of medical treatment would be required to heal his eyes? Would they be permanently damaged?
Treatment depends on the type and extent of damage. And they would be very damaged.

Why does he need to wear contacts? How are they relevant to the plot (other than this point you're asking about)?