October is Eye Injury Prevention Month

October is Eye Injury Prevention Month.  Preventing injury starts with precautionary safety measures.  For most people thinking about eye protection is not primary, we wear gloves when gardening, hats for sun, shoes and hard hats for machinery.  But, during all of these tasks are eyes are also in danger.  Our eyes should be on the first things we think about, and the good news is they are easy to protect!

More than 1 million people suffer from eye injuries each year in the US, almost 90% of these are easily preventable.  The first step is to buy, and wear safety goggles.  Today, as fashion can be a big issue, these safety goggles comes in different colors, shapes, and sizes.   They even sell tinted ones for wearing outside.

When working with any inside with any chemicals always read the labels first.  Many times the label with explain precautionary steps to take for your eye health, as well as steps to take if the fluid does get in one’s eye.  By reading the label before hand, one is not caught off guard when the fluid does come into contact with one’s eye.

When in a workshop think about the work one will be doing: will debris particles be in the air?  Are you working with gases or chemicals?  Are you working with fire?  Will your eyes be exposed to the sun?  When any of the answers to these questions are “yes” wearing protective goggles is a must.

When working outside it is important to wear at the very least sunglasses.  Sunglasses will protect your eyes from UV radiation.  They also help to protect your eyes from other debris, but they are not as protective as safety goggles, as they don’t have a protective side.

Prevention is key to protecting your eyes from injury.  In the case that an injury does occur go to the doctor or hospital as soon as possible so that as little damage as possible may be done.  Keep your eyes safe and healthy this month, no one wants to be wearing a  real patch for Halloween!

September is Sports Eye Safety Month

September is Sports Safety month.  Many of us don’t realize just how dangerous sports can be to our eyes, and thus we get injured.  It is estimated that there are over 40,000 sports related eye injuries each year, and about 90% most of these easily preventable.  Many doctors offer alternatives to wearing glasses while playing sports, and everyone should take advantage of this.

Basketball and Baseball lead the way in eye injuries.  The most common eye injury is actually getting poked in the eye, not at all ball related.  A poke in the eye can cause other problems such as a scratch on the cornea.  A minor injury like that may be irritating, but it is easily preventable by wearing eye protection.   Golf has the most call related injuries, as the balls are small, hard, and very fast. They can cause the most devastating damage of all ball related injuries.

There are three types of major sports related eye injuries: corneal abrasion, blunt injuries, and penetrating injuries.  Corneal abrasion was spoken about above; it is when the cornea gets scratched.  The most common cause is being poked in the eye.   Blunt injuries are usually caused from the impact of an object.  These injuries range from a cut on the eyelid to a black eye.    \Penetrating injuries are when a foreign object pierces the eye.   For children a common cause of this type of injury is from the BB gun pellets.  Although your kids may see think its dorky, ask them to put on eye protection as it will save everyone a lot of trouble!

The main way to protect your eyes is by wearing eye protection.  If you wear glasses you may get eye protection goggles that can go over your glasses.  Your eyes are very precious and they are easy to hurt, be sure to practice safe sports by wearing eye protection.

July is eye Injury Month

July is eye injury prevention month!  The summer is a great time relax, maybe do some work around the house, and fix things up.  But, not everyone remembers to wear sunglasses or safety goggles while doing all this work. American Academy of Ophthalmology estimates that more than two million eye injuries occur each year in the United States.  45% of these occur in the home, with another 40% occurring from sports or other recreational activities.  90% of these are preventable and only 35% occur while wearing some sort of eyewear.

July is an especially important month for eye care because of July 4th.  Fireworks cause many injuries, especially eye injuries because almost nobody is wearing eye protection while viewing the show.  There are around 2,00 firework eye injuries every year, and 50% occur in children 15 and younger.  It can be hard to force your children to wear eye protection, but it would be more regrettable to not.  The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Ocular Trauma recommend that every household have at least one pair of American National Standards Institute (ANSI) glasses.  These have side shields that protect any debris or fluids from splashing into the eye.  These will also have the ANSI marking on the side.

It is also important to remember that the sun is three times stronger in the summer, so always wear UV protection glasses.  If you are going to be working in the sun with a lot of hazardous materials try and find a pair of safety goggles that have UV protection as well.

It is an easy safety precaution that will help to prevent up to 90% of eye injuries.  Make sure to go out and by yourself a pair of safety as goggles, as well as actually using them!