Ophthalmologist Majid Moshirfar from the Moran Eye Center shares more about Halloween safety and your eyes.
HALLOWEEN SAFETY TIPS
From the FFB Website www.blindness.org
1. Wear makeup instead of masks. Use mom’s hypo-allergenic makeup if possible or purchase hypo-allergenic formulas. Have an adult apply the makeup and remove it with cold cream instead of soap and water.
2. Avoid costumes with masks, wigs, floppy hats or eye patches that block vision.
3. Avoid pointed props such as spears, swords or wands that endanger other children’s eyes.
4. Wear bright, reflective clothing or have reflective patches somewhere on the costume if you are going out at night in your costume.
5. Carry a bright flashlight to illuminate sidewalks, steps and paths.
6. No one should drive while wearing a mask.
7. Obey all traffic signals, both as a pedestrian and a driver.
8. Younger children should be accompanied by an adult while traveling about the neighborhood. Older children should trick-or-treat in groups.
9. Use common sense. Never dart out from between parked cars or hidden corners such as alleys. Avoid streets under construction. Don’t trick-or-treat in busy commercial areas or where there is heavy traffic.
10. Grownups should inspect all trick-or-treat items before allowing children to have them.
11. Be sure the path and stairs to your front door are well illuminated and clear of obstacles.
12. Daylight trick or treating is safer than going out after dark.
Halloween parties are safer than trick-or-treating at any time.
13. Halloween parties are safer than trick-or-treating at any time.
TARANTULAS AND HALLOWEEN
(from Midwest Eye Care):www.midwesteyecare.com
Unbeknownst to many, tarantulas can pose a tremendous risk for eye injuries. While tarantulas are still rare as pets, their popularity is growing, and it’s alarming to discover that some schools and museums have now adopted tarantulas as a ‘hands-on’ tool to teach children about animal life.
There are over 800 different tarantula species, and most are generally labeled as harmless since most species’ venom is often no more toxic than a bee sting. However, certain species have developed a defensive mechanism of ejecting barbed hairs off the top of their abdomen when threatened. These ‘urticating’ hairs can become lodged in your skin, causing varying degrees of irritation.
Eye injuries result when these barbed hairs come into contact with the eyes, either directly from the tarantula’s ejection or more commonly when someone rubs their eyes just after they handle a tarantula. If these hairs become embedded in the cornea, the outermost part of the eye, the barbed nature and fragility of the hairs prevents them from being removed by an eye doctor.
Your cornea and its thin covering (epithelium) have millions of nerve endings, and embedded tarantula hairs can cause disabling pain. In a recent Nebraska case, a patient required frequent pain medicine injections behind her eye for several weeks, and it often takes patients six months to return to pain-free, acceptable vision. Patients may also experience slightly-reduced vision due to corneal scarring from the injury.
NOVELTY CONTACT LENSES
Novelty contacts seems to be gaining popularity, especially around Halloween. Moran Eye Center says these contacts may cause serious eye infections. Other than the fact that they are illegal, these infections can spread to the cornea which has the potential to leave the patient with worse vision or even legally blind.
These contacts can be found online and in some retail stores sold as “accessories.” Everyone’s eyes are unique so if you must have a pair of these, contact an eye professional and have them fit specifically for your eyes.
Of course, Moran Eye Center offers a comprehensive vision care, offering everything from contacts and glasses to Lasik and implantable contact lenses.
For more information on the services available at Moran Eye Center, go to their website at www.uuhsc.utah.edu/MoranEyeCenter