30/09/2016 0 Comments
Why You Should Only Buy Coloured Contact Lenses from a Professional
Maybe you want to enhance your natural eye colour, or maybe you have a costume party coming up and you need coloured contacts to complete your look. You've gone shopping online to find the perfect pair—and the pair you want comes from a sketchy costume shop on the other side of town.
Should you take the risk and purchase those contacts? Or should you consult with a professional optometrist instead? Unless you get your contacts from an optical care professional, those coloured lenses could do disastrous things to your eyes. We'll tell you more about that below. We'll also tell you how you can use prescription coloured lenses to accent your look.
What Non-Prescription Coloured Contacts Can Do to Your Eyes
When you purchase non-prescription contact lenses, you risk buying lenses with poor construction and a poor fit. The materials could cause an allergic reaction in your eye. They could also contain abrasive or extra sticky materials that could damage the surface of your eye. Common conditions that arise from non-prescription contacts include:
- Scratches or abrasion on the cornea. You'll experience symptoms like heightened sensitivity, pain, redness, a sensation of having something stuck under your eyelid, mucus discharge, and even bleeding in particularly bad cases.
- Corneal infections or ulcers. You'll see ulcers, and you'll experience sensitivity, pain, and redness as well. Ulcers will look like pale deposits on your eyes when you can see them.
- Pink eye/conjunctivitis. This can occur if the lenses have bacteria on them. You'll have redness in your eyes and pink, hot skin around them. You'll also experience inflammation and pain.
- Decreased vision. After scratches and infection, your vision's quality could suffer. If you have to focus harder to see, or if you can't see as far in focus as you did before, then you've suffered vision loss. You'll likely experience headaches because your eyes have to try harder to see.
- Blindness. This can also occur after scratches and infection, particularly if the bacteria or microbes on the lenses attach to your eye's receptor cells. Some microbes, like amoebas, will even eat your optic nerve and permanently blind you.
These conditions won't necessarily occur every time you wear non-prescription contact lenses—but wouldn't you rather avoid the risk altogether? You don't have to purchase coloured lenses from costume stores, street vendors, beauty salons, boutiques, beach shops, or convenience stores. You can still get the colours and patterns you want if you purchase them from a professional, and you won't have to worry about any of the risks above.
How to Get Safe Coloured Contact Lenses
To get coloured lenses that won't harm you, you have to do the following:
- Visit an optometrist for an eye exam. This will determine if you can safely wear contacts, if you need a particular size, and if you need any corrections.
- Get a prescription from your optometrist. A valid prescription will include a lens measurement, an expiration date, and a brand name.
- Buy a lens from a seller that requires you to have a prescription. Ideally, you should buy the lenses from your optometrist.
- Follow all directions for cleaning and disinfecting the lenses before each use.
Once you have a prescription, you can let your imagination run wild with all the coloured contact options available.
What You Can Do with Prescription Coloured Contact Lenses
Don't think that only using prescription coloured lenses limits your options. You can still find and wear whatever colour or pattern suits your fancy. Common options include:
- Subtle/enhancement tints. Coloured lenses with this kind of descriptor will simply enhance or subtly change your natural colour. You can get them in typical colours like blue, green, grey, brown, and true hazel.
- Vibrant/colour tint. If you want to change your eye colour or give your eyes an extra pop, you'll choose vibrant colours like golden honey, sterling silver grey, sky blue, or emerald green. You can also find these lenses in purple sometimes.
- Theatrical. Think of the cat eyes options you've seen. Think of all the unique colours and patterns you've seen in movies and online portraits. You can safely try all of those options and more as long as you have a prescription for coloured lenses. Then you can create the perfect look for your next costume party or trip to Toronto Comic Con.
- Handling tint. These don't enhance your eyes in any way, but if you need a corrective prescription and you have trouble finding contacts after you drop them, these lenses can help. They have a slight bluish tint so you can distinguish them from whatever they fall on.
You may think it more convenient to purchase coloured lenses from a costume store, but you shouldn't risk your eyesight for the sake of creating the perfect costume. You can still get the colours and patterns you want—just purchase them from a professional. Schedule an appointment with your optometrist to get your coloured contact lenses today.