Looking for the ultimate Halloween costume? Designer contact lens could finish your look, or end your vision. Beware!

Oregon Eye Specialists

The Review, Tidings

Creepy costume lenses might add a spine-tingling thrill to your Halloween costume, but wearing costume contact lenses without a prescription can lead to serious eye infections or permanent vision loss.

Decorative lenses are medical devices, not costume jewelry. They must be prescribed and fitted by an eye care professional, just like regular contact lenses.

That's why Oregon Eye Specialists, P.C. and the American Academy of Opthmalogy are urging people to buy decorative contact lenses only from retailers who require a prescription and sell FDA-approved products.

A poorly fitted contact lens can easily scrape the cornea, the outer layer of the eye, making the eye more vulnerable to infection-causing bacteria and viruses.

Sometimes scarring from an infection is so bad, a corneal transplant is required to restore vision. The most extreme cases can end in blindness.

Although it is illegal to sell non-prescription contact lenses, they are available at costume shops, gas stations, corner shops and online.

Research shows that people who purchase contacts without a prescription face a 16-fold increased risk of developing an infection.

Oregon Eye Specialist offer these tips to help ensure your Halloween costume won't haunt you long after Oct. 31:

n Get a prescription for costume contact lenses

n Properly care for contact lenses

n Don't share contact lenses

n Spread the word to others about the dangers of costume contacts

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