Make sure infections and corneal ulcers aren’t part of your Halloween horror!
October 31 st is fast approaching, and for some it’s the fancy dress party night of the year. The ultimate fun accessory can be a crazy set of contact lenses. Fun Yes, but they can hide a real hidden horror!
- Many Halloween contact lenses are unregulated and illegal
- Poor quality contact lenses can cause serious eye health complications with wearers at risk of corneal ulcers or abrasions, eye infections and even blindness
- One eye expert in 10 has seen a patient with eye problems after wearing novelty contact lenses.
With Halloween approaching, the Association of Optometrists (AOP) offers advice for buying and wearing contact lenses safely – as thousands choose spooky eye wear as a finishing touch to their costume.
Get your lenses fitted by a professional, not the Internet
If they are not fitted and cared for properly, contact lenses carry a risk of eye infections, causing blindness in some rare cases. It’s not worth putting your eyes at risk, so get the best advice and make sure your contact lenses are fitted by an eye care professional.
Like swapping gruesome germs?
We didn’t think so. Never share or swap contact lenses with anyone else –
the chances of getting a nasty infection, such as bacterial conjunctivitis, is
much more likely. This can make eyes uncomfortable, pink or red, and
create a yellow or green sticky discharge, and has the potential to lead to
corneal ulcers, corneal scarring and blindness.
Can you trust the supplier?
Novelty lenses are often available in joke and fancy-dress shops and can
be purchased online but these suppliers are often unregulated. It is illegal to
sell contact lenses without the supervision of a registered professional like
an optometrist or contact lens optician because of the risk to your eyes.
Don’t keep lenses in all night, or you’ll wake up with a fright
Unless specifically designed for extended use, contact lenses should not be
worn overnight. Not only can extended use increase the risk of eye infections, it can starve your eye of oxygen and cause the lens to bind itself to the front of your eye.
Keep lenses clean but never with water
When wearing any type of contact lenses, make sure they are clean by
using the recommended contact lens solution. Never use tap water to clean
lenses because this can lead to serious, and potentially blinding, eye
conditions. And always wash and dry your hands before inserting your
Don’t re-use your lenses, they’re better as a one-night stand
You should never re-use contact lenses unless they are speciﬁcally
designed for repeat wear, as it increases the likelihood of infections and
Keratitis which is a very painful inflammation of the cornea. Re-useable
lenses must be kept in fresh contact lens solution, in a clean contact lens
Put your lenses in before putting your face on
If your costume involves a full face of make-up remember to apply it after
putting your contact lenses in.
If in doubt, take them out
If you suffer from any redness, irritation, swelling, pain or an aversion to
light, remove your lenses immediately. Consult an optometrist or contact
lens optician for advice as soon as possible.
Contact lenses can greatly improve the quality of life for many individuals. They can be worn as your main optical aid, for sport or just nights out. They can be monthly disposable, daily disposable, or tinted. Most prescriptions can be corrected, including presbyopia (needing glasses for long and short sightedness).
As an opticians In Whitley Bay, we fit lots of new patients every week, but this has to be done under strict regulated conditions. As long as they are respected, contact lenses are very safe, and highly recommended. Trust the professionals to look after your eyes.