The Halloween countdown is on and you’re probably in the final stages of planning the perfect costume; this may include being tempted to order some spooky novelty lenses to add an edge to your outfit.
Over the years, we’ve seen a rise in popularity of affordable novelty lenses. Without a proper fitting from an eye care professional, contact lenses can lead to infections, scratches and, in extreme cases, even permanent eye damage. As eye health experts, we wanted to share some top tips for caring for your lenses so you avoid getting a shock this Halloween.
Tip One - Visit an eye health professional.
Only a registered Optometrist/Contact Lens Optician/Dispensing Optician/Ophthalmic Medical Practitioner can supervise the sale of any contact lens. This includes coloured/Halloween lenses. Proper contact lens care may seem obvious but only an eye care professional can fit the contact lenses properly and provide expert guidance on how to safely wear, remove and care for your lenses.
Improper fitting, handling or hygiene can lead to permanent damage to the eye, which can be easily avoided by following the guidance provided by a professional.
When being fitted with contact lenses, our highly skilled staff will happily teach you how to care for your lenses properly and minimise all risks associated with your Halloween contact lenses to avoid any scares the next day.
Tip Two - Take proper care of your lenses.
Halloween contact lenses bought over the internet are often not supplied with contact lens solution. Contact lens solution is an essential part of lens care and must be changed with every wear, otherwise, the lenses are not being disinfected. If you don’t have any solution, do not be tempted to use tap water - only appropriate sterile solution should be used and is widely available from opticians and reputable pharmacies. When buying solutions outside the care of an Optician, you run the risk of inadvertently using a Hydrogen Peroxide (bleach!) solution which can cause serious harm if not properly neutralised!
Make sure to also check any Halloween makeup or face paint you plan to use. Some are not water soluble and therefore have the possibility of getting underneath the contact lens and scratching the eye. Water-soluble make-ups will disintegrate and be washed out of the eye by your tears
Tip Three - If in doubt, take them out.
Above all, if you experience any pain/discomfort when wearing lenses, remove them carefully and contact your local opticians as soon as possible.
Lenses are also designed to be worn for a limited time so do not keep them in all night, especially when sleeping. Overwear of your contact lenses can deprive your cornea of oxygen and lead to serious complications.
Using your lenses beyond their expiry date (usually one month from opening) will also increase the risk of infection.
Tip Four - No sharing!
Do not share or take lenses from friends - every set of eyes is different and carries different bacteria. Sharing lenses should be avoided at all costs as it dramatically increases the risk of infection.
At Duncan and Todd, our Dundee, Broughty Ferry and St Andrews branches offer a Halloween contact lens service. For just £60 you will receive a pair of lenses, comprehensive contact lens lesson, consultation and follow-up check.