The Utah Optometric Association Warns About Using Decorative Contacts That Aren’t FDA Approved
As thousands of Utahns flock to costume shops and stores to create that perfectly frightening Halloween getup, they don’t realize that one of those items could be a danger to their health – decorative contacts.
“These contacts are not safe unless they’re FDA approved and fit by a licensed optometrist,” said Ross Chatwin, OD, board member of the Utah Optometric Association (UOA). “One way to ensure they are FDA approved is to get them from your eye doctor.”
You should never purchase decorative contacts from a street vendor, flea market, beauty supply store or Halloween store, according to the FDA.
“The damage can be irreparable,” said Dr. Chatwin.
The risks of using contacts that weren’t prescribed by an eye doctor include:
- A cut or scratch on the top layer of your eyeball (Corneal Abrasion)
- Allergic reactions like itchy, watery red eyes
- Decreased vision
If you have redness, pain that doesn’t go away after a short period of time, or decreased vision, see your eye doctor right away. These are signs of infection and can cause blindness if not treated.
A costume artist for the hit TV show, American Horror story, in conjunction with the FDA issued a video warning about getting a prescription for these lenses.
“The decorative ones aren’t one-size fits all and if someone tries to sell you them without asking for a valid prescription, don’t buy them,” said Dr. Helene, Clayton-Jeter of the FDA, in the video.
You can search for an eye doctor near you that can prescribe decorative contacts by visiting this search tool: www.utaheyedoc.org/locate_a_doctor.php.