Halloween will soon be here, and it’s important to remember safety not only while trick-or-treating, but also while planning the perfect costume! Each year, thousands of ER visits occur in October and November due to allergic reactions or eye injuries that arise from wearing decorative contact lenses as part of a costume. Wearing decorative contact lenses is especially appealing during Halloween because they can change the appearance of the eyes. Although decorative lenses may seem “cool,” they are not fashion accessories or makeup, and are still considered medical devices that are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). As you prepare to participate in all the festivities this month, remember to talk to an ophthalmologist if you plan to wear decorative lenses as part of your costume.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), “by law, decorative lenses, whether they correct vision or not, require a prescription and proper fitting from an eye doctor.” No matter how well you can see, “you need to get an eye exam and a prescription from an eye care professional in order to wear any kind of contact lens” Without proper medical input, the contact lenses could cause a lot of damage to your eyesight.
Another popular costume add-on is eyelash extensions. If you plan to add eyelash extensions as part of your Halloween costume, make sure and plan to find a reputable and hygienic salon or experienced aesthetician Lash-glue allergies can cause severe reactions which spread easily to your eyes.
For both adults and children, Halloween is a fun season of parties and celebrating with treats. In order to fully enjoy all that the season has to offer, we recommend avoiding costumes that fully or partially block vision, or require fake or costume makeup around the eyes. Most Halloween makeup is not formulated for eye safety, so use caution when applying makeup, glue, glitter, or other decoration to your face.
Finally, since Halloween trick-or-treating is an evening activity, make sure that you or your child is wearing their prescription eyewear so you can see any potential obstacles. While eyeglasses may not be part of your original costume, it is important to have your vision fully functioning, especially when outside at night. If you haven’t done so already, consider scheduling your annual eye exam before Halloween or stop by for a LASIK consultation! The eyecare professionals at Georgia Eye are ready to help with any of your vision needs.