ATLANTA (Oct. 04, 2016) – According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 41 million Americans wear contact lenses. However, data from a recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report shows that of contact lens-related corneal infections reported to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), close to 20 percent of patients had “a central corneal scar, a decrease in visual acuity, or required a corneal transplant following the event.” In addition, more than 25 percent of the infections were accompanied by “modifiable factors, including sleeping in contact lenses or poor contact lens hygiene.”
Prevent Blindness Georgia has recently declared October as Contact Lens Safety Awareness Month in an effort to educate the public on the best ways to obtain, care for and use contact lenses. The non-profit group has a dedicated webpage with free information at: http://www.preventblindness.org/wearing-contact-lenses.
Contact lens sales are regulated by both the FDA and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Prevent Blindness reminds the public that it is illegal for anyone to sell contact lenses without a prescription. Even if the lenses are cosmetic or non-correcting, they are still classified as medical devices.
Prevent Blindness Georgia recommends the following tips for contact lens care:
To help keep Halloween fun and festive, Prevent Blindness Georgia also recommends that costume-wearers:
“For many, contact lenses are a safe and effective way to improve vision,” said DeAndria Nichols, VP of Adult Vision Programs at Prevent Blindness Georgia. “We urge everyone to be cautious when using contact lenses, whether for prescription or cosmetic purposes and to always follow the instructions of an eye care professional.”
For more information on contact lens or Halloween eye safety, please call Prevent Blindness Georgia at (404) 266-2020 or visit www.pbga.org.
About Prevent Blindness Georgia
Prevent Blindness Georgia was founded in 1965 as a state affiliate of Prevent Blindness, the nation’s leading volunteer eye health and safety organization since 1908. Our mission is to prevent blindness and preserve sight for the residents of Georgia which is accomplished through vision screenings for children and adults, eye exams and glasses for indigent seniors and homeless and working poor adults, public education on eye health and safety to persons at risk for eye disease, and vision screening training. To learn more or donate to our good work, visit www.pbga.org.