Halloween Specialty Contact Lenses Safety Concerns
Every October our office receives several requests regarding prescriptions for specialty Halloween contact lenses which come in some crazy colors and evil designs. This brings up contact lens safety concerns as all contact lenses are considered medical devices by the FDA and rules and regulations apply to assure eye safety and reduce the chances of contact lens induced vision loss. These rules apply to contact lenses used to correct vision and also to contact lenses that are meant only to change eye color for Halloween. They are all medical devices on the eye which if not used safely, can lead to eye infections, corneal damage, and vision loss.Here are the guidelines for obtaining a contact lens prescription for vision correcting contacts as well as Halloween contact lenses:
– Anyone wishing to wear contact lenses for the first time must complete an insertion and removal class in which they must demonstrate to us that they can safely and independently insert and remove the contact lenses. Contact lens safety and cleaning guidelines will also be discussed at this class which takes about one hour and is usually not covered by your insurance.– The contact lenses will then be viewed on the eye by a licensed optometrist for proper fit, movement, lid clearance, and centering on the cornea. This assessment must be done for each type of contact lens worn including Halloween contact lenses.– If needed, a follow up visit may also be required to reassess or adjust the contact lens prescription.Once these steps have been completed, the patient has “graduated” from contact lens services school and the contact lens prescription is valid for two years. Contact lens services and insertions and removal classes are usually not covered by insurance and professional services will apply.Unfortunately, there are internet sales of Halloween contact lenses that require little if any proof of a valid contact lens prescription or verification that the contact lenses are FDA approved. These are NOT recommended!
To obtain FDA approved Halloween contact lenses from our office…For CURRENT contact lens wearers: Please call our office and we can check the availability of specialty Halloween contact lenses which would be appropriate for eyes. Once the contact lenses arrive, we will assess the fitting of the contacts. A small professional fee may apply.
For NEW contact lens wearers: Same rules/regulations apply for Halloween contacts as regular, clear vision correcting contact lenses. A current eye examination (often covered by insurance) and contact lens services and class (not covered by insurance) are required.Never use contact lenses that have not been prescribed or designed for you. Never use your friends contact lenses or have your friends insert or remove your contact lenses for you. Never sleep in your contacts unless they are specifically designed for overnight wear.