Sight risk warning over Hallowe’en contact lenses

A warning by the British Contact Lens Association
A warning by the British Contact Lens Association

People are being warned not to play ‘Russian roulette’ with their vision by wearing Hallowe’en-themed contact lenses.

The warning is in response to a growing trend of people buying these novelty items from market stalls or over the internet, potentially putting their eye health at risk.

The British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) has advised people should speak to their registered practitioner if they want to add ‘spooky’ contact lenses to a fancy dress outfit.

BCLA president Keith Tempany said: “Wearing fancy lenses might make you look cool for one night on Hallowe’en but losing your sight could be a lifelong horror story.

“Cosmetic coloured lenses are a medical device and should be prescribed by an eye care professional. These lenses should only be purchased from – and fitted by – a registered practitioner.

“By sharing coloured contact lenses young people are playing Russian roulette and chancing it with their eye health and putting their sight at risk.”

The lenses, which alter eye colour and have been made popular by smash hit TV series and films including Twilight, are often shared around amongst friends – increasing the risk of corneal ulcers and infections.

The campaign is warning against buying lenses from fashion outlets, market stalls and unregistered online sellers and stresses the importance of visiting an eye care professional to ensure lenses fit properly and receive expert advice on how to wear and store them safely.

For more details about the British Contact Lens Association, visit www.bcla.org.uk.