Those planning on dressing up this Halloween are being urged to look after their eyes in order to avoid an unexpected sight-mare.
Specsavers Ireland wants to ensure fancy dress revellers don’t play a trick on their eyes through costume lenses and make-up and instead treat them to the care they deserve however they choose to celebrate this October 31st.
While novelty contact lenses may seem like a perfect costume addition, they can cause damage to eyes – especially if not handled correctly. Not knowing how to wear or care for them can also result in numerous minor eye conditions - such as red eye, infections and scratches - as well as more serious complications that can, in severe cases, lead to sight loss.
Kerril Hickey, Specsavers optician and store partner, says: ‘Halloween contact lenses have become incredibly popular over the last few years; however, consumers often are not aware of the risks associated with misusing contact lenses.
‘In particular, if a wearer hasn’t had a proper consultation with an optometrist beforehand, they probably haven’t been taught how to wear or care for their lenses correctly. The results can be nasty and range from mildly irritating complications, such as blurry vision and conjunctivitis, to potentially sight-threatening conditions such as fungal infections like microbial keratitis.’
Mr Hickey continues: ‘If you do start to notice any discomfort, irritation or pain during or after wearing Halloween contact lenses it is important you visit an optician immediately. Many of our Specsavers stores now offer eye health clinics where you can receive treatment for a range of minor eye conditions without needing to visit your GP or hospital.’
It is also important to ensure any spooktacular make-up is properly removed before going to bed. Mr Hickey adds: ‘Leaving your eye makeup on when you go to sleep – particularly eyeliner and mascara – will increase your chances of getting bacterial and oil build up around your eyes or even inflammation. Make sure you always gently remove beauty products to reduce infection and keep your eyes clean.’
How to avoid a frightening mishap this Halloween
1. Seek guidance from your optician before using novelty contact lenses
2. Avoid purchasing cheap products online
3. Clean and store your lenses properly to avoid infection
4. Do not fall asleep in your lenses
5. Never share contact lenses with other people