Written by Catherine Borgeson, O.D.
Board Certified Optometric Physician
October means a time for frightening fun, colorful costumes, and trick or treating; just don’t let eye problems haunt you afterwards! Follow these ghoulish guidelines to stay safe this Halloween.
- Contact lenses can add extra spookiness to your costume, but they can easily cause eye infections, irritation, and redness. Contact lenses are medical devices that need to be fit by a licensed eye doctor. One size lens does not fit all and, if measured incorrectly, contact lenses can choke off the oxygen to your eyes. An ill-fitting lens or improper lens care can cause permanent vision loss. Talk to your eye doctor if you want decorative contact lenses.
- Make-up and Face Paint complement a creative costume, just avoid irritating your skin with these tips:
- Only use newly purchased make-up or face paint. Last year’s face paint is a breeding ground for bacteria.
- Test a small area of skin on your arm with the make-up or paint a few days before you wear it. If the area becomes itchy, swollen or red, it means you’re allergic and shouldn’t use it.
- Wash off make-up and paint by rubbing with warm sudsy water after your creepy adventures to avoid eyelid styes and break-outs.
- Masks and Props make costumes more detailed; however, they can also cause injuries. Sharp or pointy props should be avoided along with costumes that drag on the ground. If a mask blocks your vision, cut larger eye holes as needed to have unobscured sight. Remember, tripping makes you an easier target for zombies.
- “Eye see you” Don’t forget to light the way for trick-or-treaters around walkways, and make your costume visible in the dark by using bright or reflective materials. Carrying a flashlight to fend off any creatures of the night is a good idea, too.