31. December 2011 09:48
Every Halloween, coloured contact lenses become more and more popular, as many people want to change their appearance not only with the use of costumes and makeup, but also by wearing coloured contact lenses making their eyes resemble fantastic creatures from films and television shows.
However, the dangers of using coloured contact lenses without prescription and failing to comply with instructions provided by eye care professionals and contact lens manufacturers are disregarded by a number of young people. Consequently, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and its partners, the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus and the Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists have issued a warning to inform parents and teenagers about the risks connected with wearing cosmetic contact lenses.
The warning put special emphasis on the fact that contact lenses should be bought only after receiving a prescription from licensed eye care professionals (i.e. eye doctors or optometrists), as wearing contact lenses that are not properly fitted could result in serious complications, including permanent blindness. In addition, the American Academy of Ophthalmology reminds all contact lens wearers that even cosmetic lenses require appropriate care and should be thoroughly cleaned before use.
29. December 2011 09:25
Illegal sale of coloured contact lenses has caused a lot of controversy in Florida this week. An optician who lives in the area contacted First Coast News when one of his patients had informed him he had seen coloured contacts sold at a petrol station.
As it is illegal to sell contact lenses without prescription in Florida, the optician, Vice Cottone, was so concerned by the situation that he went to the petrol station himself. Subsequently, he called the Clay County Sheriff’s Department, which issued a cease and desist letter against the shop.
Talking to the television station, Cottone stressed that buying contact lenses without prescription is very dangerous and may lead to such complications as corneal ulcers. This year two young women from New York and Georgia partially lost their vision due to illegal lenses and, according to Cottone, the time of year may make more young people want to buy such coloured contact lenses to impress their friends at Halloween parties.
27. December 2011 09:56
In order to minimise the risk of infection, an eye care expert has warned, contact lenses wearers should never disregard all the safety and hygiene instructions that eye care practitioners and contact lens manufacturers provide.
According to Brendan O’Brien, who is an optometrist publishing articles in the Huffington Post, some experienced contact lens users become careless in the way they maintain and wear their lenses. The expert added that most British contact lens wearers sometimes fail to remove their contacts before going to bed and clean lenses with tap water instead of lens care solution. He cited the case of a journalist writing for the Mail on Sunday, Katie Richardson, who did not follow the hygiene instructions and developed microbial keratitis, a potentially blinding eye disease.
In his latest article, O’Brien also invokes a Dutch study, which revealed that microbial keratitis occurs 20 times more often in individuals who sleep with their contact lenses on than those who remove them for the night, concluding that the warnings printed on labels are there for a reason.
25. December 2011 09:39
The number of people who need vision correction (contact lenses or eyeglasses) has been rising in recent years, but most experts agree that it has nothing to do with the development of 3D technology, which can be found not only at cinemas, but also in many homes.
According to Dr Lothaire Bluth, who works for the Southwestern Eye Center, the recent significant rise in the number of myopia sufferers is partially associated with the effects that digital screens (laptops, smart phones, TV sets, portable game consoles) have on our eyes.
Recently, the American Optometric Association published a report revealing that as many as 30% of parents are worried about the impact of modern technology on their kids’ vision. Dr Bluth believes, however, that 3D games and films do not pose much risk, which was claimed by a number of people when Nintendo launched its 3DS console.
In Dr Bluth’s opinion, 3D images may be even less harmful than conventional ones, as they require focusing the eyes independently.
23. December 2011 09:27
It is still autumn, but eye care experts urge all those who love winter sports to start thinking about proper skiing eyewear now, as good vision and eye protection are indispensable on ski slopes.
First of all, most eye care professionals believe that glasses wearers should think about switching to contact lenses at least temporarily. This is because contact lenses have numerous advantages over glasses when a person engages in winter activities (they do not mist over when entering a warm place, they offer a much wider field of vision and do not break when a person falls), which make skiing and snowboarding much more enjoyable.
Secondly, as Dharmesh Patel, the chairman of the Eyecare Trust, points out, one should remember about protecting one’s eyes against UV light. The level of UV radiation is higher at high attitudes and, additionally, snow reflects up to 80% of the radiation, making UV protection even more important. Fortunately many contact lenses have UV filters and there are a wide variety of ski goggles with UV protection.