It’s Halloween! Which means apple bobbing, spooky parties, trick-or-treating and a range of seriously scary costumes.
But what are you dressing up as this year? And could your outfit actually be HARMFUL to your health?
If you’re planning to wear a get-up that includes novelty contact lenses (think zombies, vampires, aliens etc), then you may need to think twice.
Health experts have warned that cheap lenses can cause some pretty nasty problems, including eye infections, corneal ulcers, headaches, and – in rare cases – blindness.
Now that’s way scarier than a silly costume, right?
The experts also say contacts should always be removed at night and that there’s an issue with people sharing them, which can spread infection.
‘They shouldn’t be supplied by anyone other than an optician or doctor,’ Alistair Bridge – of the General Optical Council – tells the BBC.
‘Opticians make sure that contact lenses fit properly and that people get expert advice on how to wear and store them safely.’
The Chartered Trading Standards Institute’s Leon Livermore adds: ‘Cosmetic contact lenses are often made and distributed on a “one size fits all” basis and not tailored to the wearer’s needs, which can increase the risk of eye health issues.’
Livermore points out that the law states contact lenses must be dispensed in the presence of an optician or medical practitioner.
For this reason, he advises against buying them online or from shops without professional supervision. If we do this, it’s more likely to cause eye damage that could be long lasting.
He continues: ‘It’s essential that cosmetic lenses are fitted by a qualified professional who’s able to provide advice on their safe use and ongoing care.’
Eek. We’re thinking it would probably be wiser to just go contact-free this 31 October.