I always get excited when October rolls around. It means the end of Florida’s brutal heat and the beginning of cooler days and holidays to come. An American favorite is Halloween or All Hallows’ Eve. It’s history goes back to the Celtic end of the harvest season and a day when the living and deceased worlds overlapped. Today we have come to know Halloween as a fun day when our children dress up in costumes and go trick or treating. Unfortunately it’s also a time when several hundred eye injuries occur.
Here are some tips to keep your child’s eyesight safe on Halloween:
- Avoid masks or patches that limit vision. In particular, make sure your child’s peripheral vision is not hindered.
- Refrain from using sharp objects such as wands, swords or spears that may poke an eye.
- Make sure costumes don’t drag the ground which may lead to trips or falls.
- Always give your child a flashlight so they can see in dark neighborhoods.
One particular danger is the use of illegal cosmetic contact lenses. Many companies sell Halloween lenses without regard to your eye health. They can cause eye pain, swelling, infection, corneal abrasion, ulceration and even permanent vision loss.
- Never buy contact lenses from a beauty store, gas station, or hair salon. These are illegal and should be reported to the police.
- Avoid cosmetic lenses sold over the internet. Many companies’ websites appear to be local but are actually located overseas where contact lens fabrication and safety is not regulated.
- Never buy any contact lens where prescription verification is not enforced. Even non power cosmetic contacts require a prescription stipulating various curves and size of the lens.
- Be aware cosmetic contacts may limit your peripheral vision. Avoid tasks such as driving or ambulating in dark areas while wearing them.
- Halloween lenses fit and evaluated by your eye doctor should be your only source for safe wear..
Be safe this Halloween and don’t jeopardize your most precious sense of sight.
Coan Eye Care