Decorative Contact Lenses Can Be Dangerous without a Prescription

October 26, 2022 Posted by Dr. Shah

Halloween is just around the corner bringing with it scary costumes and disguises! A very popular Halloween accessory are colored or designer contact lenses for people who want to change the color of their eyes. But especially for Halloween there is an increase in the number of people using these lenses to enhance their costumes. However, few people are aware of the risks of using these contact lenses.

Most people believe that fancy contact lenses do not require the same level of care or consideration as standard contact lenses because they can be purchased over the counter or on the Internet. However, it should be noted that according to the OCU, the sale of contact lenses over the Internet is illegal and they can only be dispensed in physical stores that have an ophthalmic-optometric professional who supervises the sale and guarantees that the health of the eyes is not put at risk.

All contact lenses are medical devices that require a medical prescription and, therefore, a proper fitting by an eye care professional.

Why do you need a prescription for contact lenses?

Even if you have perfect vision, it is important to undergo an eye examination before using any type of contact lens. A prescription ensures that the lens fits the eye correctly, among other things. If the lens does not fit properly, it may be difficult to remove and cause serious injury.

Tips for safely using contact lenses for costumes:

  • Have an eye exam by an eye care professional, such as an ophthalmologist, who will measure each eye and tell you how to care for contact lenses properly.
  • Get a valid prescription that includes the brand name, measurements and expiration date of the lenses.
  • Purchase the contact lenses at a point of sale that requires a prescription.
  • Follow the instructions to take care of contact lenses regarding cleaning, disinfection and time of use.
  • Never share your contact lenses with another person.
  • Have follow-up examinations according to your ophthalmologist’s instructions.
  • If you notice any swelling, excessive discharge, pain or discomfort caused by contact lenses, remove them and consult an ophthalmologist immediately. Eye infections can develop into serious lesions very quickly and in some cases the damage can be irreversible.