October is National Eye Injury Prevention Month which is sponsored by The American Academy of Ophthalmologists. It coincides with the World Health Organization’s World Sight Day on the second Thursday of every October.
That means an opportunity to review how you are protecting your eyes from injuries that affect your eyesight and to raise awareness about blindness and vision impairment. Those injuries can range from minor inconveniences to the loss of your eyesight in one or both eyes.
Where Do Eye Injuries Occur?
While about half of all eye injuries occur in the home, approximately 2,000 eye injuries are job related and require some sort of medical treatment. Close to one third of those job connected accidents result in a visit to a hospital emergency room and close to 100 of those will mean at least one or more missed work days.
Tips For Prevention
The Mayo Clinic has a number of tips that will reduce the chance you, your family members or your co-workers will injure their eyes. Here are some of the key eye safety suggestions for you to remember:
- During Do It Yourself Projects
- Safety glasses that have side shields should be worn during risky activities and whenever you are at risk of having your eyes hit by flying particles, objects or dust.
- If you are working with chemicals, then goggles are strongly recommended for all workers and onlookers.
- Should any children be using sharp items such as pencils, knives or scissors it is recommended that they are supervised.
- Yard Projects
- Whenever you are doing work around the yard you should wear protective eyewear – especially if you are operating lawnmowers, trimmers or leaf blowers.
- Make sure you keep children away from any airborne debris, especially while lawnmowers, trimmers or leaf blowers are in use.
- When not in use, make sure any hazardous items such as fertilizers, pesticides and chemicals are stored where children cannot access them.
- Cooking and Cleaning
- Exercise extra care when cooking greasy items and be sure to use a grease shield so there is no splattering of grease.
- Pay extra attention when working with chemicals and chemical based cleaners. Check the labels prior to use. And remember to keep them out of the reach of children
- Store your sharp kitchen utensils in a child-proof location.
- Some Other Safety Tips
- When playing sports use protective eyewear.
- Do not let children play with a variety of projectile toys such as darts, bows and arrows
- Fireworks should be left to professionals. If you do celebrate with them, use extra care
Signs of Eye Injury
Seek medical care as soon as you observe any of the following:
- Eye pain
- Trouble with sight
- Eyelid cut or torn
- Problems moving one or both eyes
- Strange size or shape of the pupil
- Bloody white portion of the eye
- Anything on the eye or any part of the eye that cannot be removed effortlessly
What to do when an injury to the eye occurs
- Seek medical assistance as soon as possible – even if the problem appears minor
- Don not run or otherwise touch the eye
- Resist the urge to remove anything that might be stuck on the eye’s surface or that looks like it has pierced the eye
- Never apply medication without a doctor’s approval
- If a chemical gets in the eye then flush it out with lots of clean water
- Put some protection over the eye until you can get to a doctor.
Our optometrist would be happy to answer any questions you have about eye safety or if you feel you may have an issue with your eyesight. If you have any questions or need any additional information about eye safety, contact World Eyeglasses today and we will be happy to discuss it with you and offer our assistance.