In the name of fashion

Men and women have gone to great lengths sometimes to change their appearance for the whims of fashion. Most of us women have seen (or worn) high heel shoes. These make the legs look longer  by keeping you slightly off balance compared to a neutral stance without the heels. The dangers are pretty low but include ankle and other leg injuries.

Jewelry is another common fashion items. Necklaces and rings have very little risk. Basically they just are where you put them. Entanglement is a risk, but easily avoided by removing the jewelry before doing something which may get you caught. Earrings and other piercings have danger of infection, which can sometimes be severe, but rarely leading to permanent disfigurement.

Makeup can drastically change a person’s appearance. Popular makeup use styles and colors have changed through the years, but the makeup itself is basically the same. My mom called it a woman’s war paint. Minor skin irritation is the most common side effect.

However, there is a new fashion trend that is catching on, especially among young girls which has a risk that I think is unacceptable. It is non-medical colored contact lenses. There is a music video from Lady Gaga which she has computer enhanced large eyes. Colored contact lenses have been available for awhile. These new ones actually have the color slightly larger than a person’s real eye color area that makes it appear larger.

Young girls are buying several pairs and then changing their “eyes” like you would earrings or other accessories. They are illegal, but available over the internet. What’s the big deal? Few of these lenses have been approved by the FDA. This means that they are made in unknown conditions. Also because everyone has a different shaped eye and you can’t measure it yourself like you could an arm for a bracelet, you don’t know if the lens you buy actually fits. From what I understand, many internet companies will sell the lenses without a prescription. Incorrectly fitting contact lens can cause scratching. Continued irritation like that can cause infection. Infection could also be introduced by improper care and storage of the lenses.

No matter what the cause, eye infections aren’t a joking matter. They can quickly lead to blindness. Parents need to be aware of the dangers of non-medical contact lenses. Do you really want to risk your sight (or your daughter’s sight), just for the sake of a fashion whim?

Regular contact lenses are sold after an exam by an eye doctor who will measure the eye for a proper fit.

One Response

  1. I once got a necklace tangled into the inner workings of an IBM Selectric and had to be rescued by a fellow office worker. It’s not likely to happen these days, is it? The biggest “fashion” danger I have now is getting my long skirts caught in a door!

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