Since the 1930s, people have been attending foam parties. These parties haven't gotten a whole lot of attention until recently, when people showed up in droves at a South Florida emergency room complaining of horrible eye symptoms. People love these parties, especially during spring break, and some cities have nightclubs that offer them every weekend. If you're planning on attending one, this guide explains what you need to know about how the foam can affect your eyes.  

Explanation of a Foam Party

When clubs or other organizations offer foam parties, they rent machines that produce soapsuds on the dance floor or the designated dance area of an outdoor venue.

Workers attach the machines to the ceiling or along the edge of the dance floor. Once attached and filled with the foam substance, the machines are turned on. Intermittently throughout the party, the machines release the foam, or soap, onto the dance space. As the soap comes out of the machine, it turns to foam, or bubbles.

Combined with dancing and alcohol, the foam provides a different kind of party atmosphere that thousands across the country enjoy.  

What Happens When the Foam Gets In Your Eyes

While these parties seem harmless enough, there are some dangers to partygoers that you need to know about. These dangers deal specifically with your eyes. Sure, getting soap in your eyes is never fun, but if the person charged with the responsibility of setting up the machine does not dilute the substance properly, any number of these eye symptoms can occur:

  • severe itchiness and redness
  • eye infections
  • temporary blindness
  • inability to open your eye
  • blurred vision
  • dizziness

Some of these symptoms go away quickly. But some can last for up to six days or longer.

How You Can Protect Yourself

While the news reports may scare some people away from foam parties, most facilities work hard to ensure that the foam solution is safe for patrons. If you really want to go to a foam party, you'll need to take your own precautions first. Some of these include:

  • remove contact lenses; these can add to the irritation
  • don't attend a party where glassware is used (soap makes glass slippery and breakage can occur)
  • keep alcohol consumption to a minimum so you're more alert
  • leave the dance floor the moment you begin to feel eye irritation

While there is no sure-fire way to prevent eye irritation at a foam party, you can reduce your chances of an emergency room visit by understanding the dangers of something as simple as soap. If you've visited one of these parties very recently and are experiencing any eye irritation, consult with an eye-care expert likeSan Juans Vision Source so they can determine whether there is any permanent damage.