Colored, decorative, and special effect contact lenses are available in almost any imaginable color or design and can seem like a fun addition to a Halloween costume. However, decorative contact lenses can pose significant risks to eye health if they are not obtained from a reputable source and fit correctly.
Though they do not have a power to correct vision, decorative lenses can only be legally acquired with a doctor’s prescription. Many web sites, beauty supply stores, and Halloween stores may advertise that they have decorative Halloween contact lenses for sale without a prescription, but the seller can face serious fines and penalties for illegal sale of contacts. The lenses that are sold without a prescription are often not FDA approved lenses and could be made of materials that have not been adequately tested on human eyes, resulting in scratches to the front of the eye, bacterial infections, allergic reactions, and potentially could lead to scarring that causes vision loss
Dr. Piracha has compiled some helpful tips to follow if you have a doctor’s prescription and are wearing decorative contacts this Halloween:
- Replace the contacts when recommended.
- Do not sleep in them.
- Carefully wash your hands before handling the lenses.
- Clean and store them with the appropriate multi-purpose contact lens solution. Never reuse the same solution to store or clean the lenses. Do not use water, saliva, saline or eye drops to clean or store the lenses.
- Do not swim or wear contact lenses in a hot tub.
- Never share contact lenses with another person.