The dangers of Halloween contact lenses
So, it’s that time of year again when pumpkins are being calved, sweets are ready to go and adults are looking at what to wear for that Halloween party. Many adults may opt to wear the addition of coloured, Halloween themed, novelty contact lenses and they may be as scary as they look. There has been lots of media coverage on how these novelty contact lenses can cause blindness and irreparable damage to the eyes, but here I will give you plenty of information about these lenses so they don’t cause you a fright.
You can buy novelty, Halloween themed contact lenses almost anywhere but ophthalmologists advise they should only be purchased from an eye clinic, opticians or doctor who have assessed the eyes condition before recommending any sort of lenses. Buying novelty contact lenses from anywhere else could put your eyes at risks.
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New to contact lenses?
A lot people that buy novelty lenses tend to be people that do not wear regular contact lenses and therefore may not know how to look after them and use them correctly and safely. It is imperative to attend an opticians or eye clinic when buying these novelty contact lenses, so you are shown exactly how to put them in and remove them correctly. The contact lenses may not have any kind of prescription in them but they will need to be looked after with care to avoid any nasty effects to the eyes.
Care and attention
You will be advised fully when you see an eye doctor or optician on how to look after and use the lenses, but here are a few quick tips; do not share any type of contact lenses with anyone whether this is for a long time or even for someone to try them on for a second, this can lead to an eye infection. Always clean them as advised by the eye doctor/optician. Do not clean them using tap water, the incorrect solution or lick them and always handle them with clean hands.
What are the risks?
If you have any pain or discomfort when you wear or after removing the novelty contact lenses (or any lenses) you should speak to your ophthalmologist or optician as soon as possible, so they can advise the best course of action. If you have a severe reaction to them such as loss of vision or severe pain, you should go to your local eye hospital as soon as possible. Also, you should avoid driving in novelty contact lenses, even if you put your normal glasses on, as there is risks here too; a lot of novelty lenses are coloured and have a small hole for you to see through, if this hole is not correctly in line with your pupil it can compromise your vision, especially at night time.
About the expert
Mr Samer Hamada | Consultant Ophthalmologist and Corneal Surgeon
MD, MSc, DO (hons), FRCSEd, FRCOphth I am Samer Hamada, founder and consultant ophthalmic surgeon with over 20 years’ experience in ophthalmology. I am a world-renowned specialist in cornea, cataract and refractive surgery. I’m not only a leading surgeon but also the only dual fellowship trained in corneal diseases in children from reputable institutions in the UK. At Eye Clinic London I work closely with other consultant ophthalmologists, optometrists and orthoptists to achieve the best outcomes for our patients. Our main aim is to make sure our patients get the safest and best treatments available to them. We put your safety before anything else so you can rest assured that if you choose us you will be in the best and safest hands.