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Optometrist Warns Against Wearing Unprescribed Contact Lenses For Halloween, Could Cause Eye Infections


While many people prepare their costumes for Halloween, an optometrist urges people not to wear designer contact lenses unless a licensed doctor says it to avoid eye infections.

US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers a contact lens a medical device. When an optometrist writes a contact lens prescription, it signifies that the expert understands the lens will appropriately fit the wearer’s eye. That is, it must be visible in the patient’s eye while at the doctor’s office.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said around 40 million Americans wear contact lenses. That is roughly one in every six. It’s tough to say how many people wear costume contact lenses during Halloween, but the number certainly increases.


(Photo : BAY ISMOYO/AFP via Getty Images)
An Indonesian man displays his collection of rings with various gemstones at an exhibition and competition of the best gemstone at a mall in Jakarta on August 6, 2015. The recent fad of collecting rings with precious gemstone or polished gemstone locally called batu akik” is sweeping across Indonesia, with collectors going for the very rare stones and it’s possession many believe will give the owner supernatural power.

Avoid Wearing Unprescribed Contact Lens to Avoid Halloween Nightmare, Optometrist Says

Phillip Yuhas, a faculty at The Ohio State University College of Optometry and a licensed optometrist at Central Ohio, wrote in The Conversation that contact lenses might represent at least a moderate danger to health if not worn under the supervision of an eye doctor.

All contact lenses, according to Yuhas, have the potential to cause major ocular issues. Eye infections caused by bacteria, fungus, and parasites are more common in contact lens wearers than non-wearers. A disease can rob a person’s central vision from one of these tiny creatures.

According to Yuhas, a contact lens is a piece of plastic that covers the eye and prevents oxygen from accessing its front surface. The formation of new blood vessels, redness, wetness, and discomfort are all indications and symptoms of an oxygen-deficient eye.

Most contact lenses are typically safe for those who wear them according to their eye doctor’s instructions. According to studies, many patients are not adherent, exhibiting at least one high-risk contact lens habit. Despite the lack of systematic research on the subject, eye professionals hear much anecdotal evidence suggesting patients using costume contact lenses are more likely to engage in dangerous activities.

It’s easy to imagine why patients could be enticed to sleep with their costume contact lenses on. To begin with, people probably consider their contact lenses to be aesthetic accessories rather than durable medical instruments. Second, kids may not wear contact lenses outside of the Halloween season and so are uninformed of the dangers of contact lens usage. Finally, one alcoholic beverage or two is likely to impair otherwise complying contact lens wearers’ decision-making processes. They want to go to bed – removing their contact lenses can wait till the next day!

Decorative contact lenses can also be dangerous since they may not fit your eyes properly. There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all contact lens. They are available in a variety of materials, forms, and sizes. Only your eye doctor can tell you whether or not a contact lens is safe for your eyes. The sale of non-prescription costume contact lenses is thus prohibited in the United States. Surface abrasions, allergic reactions, and poor vision can all be caused by ill-fitting costume contact lenses.

ALSO READ: Multifocal and Bifocal Contact Lenses

How To Use Contact Lens Properly If One Can’t Avoid Wearing One On Halloween

Wales Online shared seven tips to help people avoid getting bloodshot eyes this Halloween if they can’t avoid wearing contact lenses.

Schedule an appointment with a registered optometrist

Even if you have good eyesight, experts recommend consulting an optometrist for a check-up regularly. People need to get their eyes checked to see if contact lenses are right for them, and then you’ll need a prescription for the correct lens dimensions.

Purchase from a reputable vendor

It’s critical to purchase contact lenses from an eye doctor or a seller that requires a prescription. Other stores may not have the same safety standards and laws or may not do quality inspections as thoroughly. Because contact lenses are considered medical equipment, people must purchase them with a prescription.

Never share contact lenses with others

A person may get an infection, eye illnesses, and corneal ulcers when they share contact lenses. It would be best if a person wearing a contact lens would not share this medical device with anyone else.

Comply with the directions

It may seem obvious, but it’s critical always to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning, disinfecting, and using contact lenses. People should never clean contact lenses with water, and they should not use them excessively. If it’s a single-use lens, it should be discarded after one day and not used for longer than the prescribed duration.

Never sleep while wearing contacts

Sleeping in contact lenses may be irritating at best, and at worst, it can cause lasting harm to your eyes. Sleeping in cosmetic lenses can cause them to become misaligned and irritate your eyes, so remove them before going to bed.

Wear contact lenses before applying make-up

Before putting on the Halloween make-up, make sure to place contact lenses first. Also, make sure to remove them first before removing your make-up.

Remove contact lenses if eyes are irritated

If your contact lenses cause redness, itching, swelling, or irritation, you should remove them immediately. Consult an optician or go to A&E to have eyes treated immediately if the problem gets more serious.

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Check out more news and information on Medicine and Health in Science Times.

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