If you or your child participate in sports, it’s important to be aware of possible sports injuries and how to protect your eyes during such activities. In fact, an emergency room treats a sports-related eye injury every 13 minutes. This works out to more than 40,000 eye injuries caused by sports each year, 43 percent of which occur in children 14 and younger. So in honor of September being Sports Eye Safety Awareness Month, we’re bringing you some eye safety tips, to keep your vision and eye health in top shape.
The Biggest Risks
While participating in any sport could potentially result in an eye injury, there are a few that tend to be the biggest contributors to these types of injuries. The American Academy of Family Physicians cites that basketball and baseball have been found to cause the most eye injuries of all sports, followed by water sports and racquet sports. Simply being aware of this may encourage you to take extra precautions if you or your child plays these sports in particular.
All it takes to prevent 90 percent of eye-related sports injuries is wearing the right eye protection. Yet only 15 percent of children and 33 percent of adults reported that they consistently do this. We highly recommend always wearing proper eye protection during all sport activities. Changing this one behavior can make a world of difference in improved eye safety.
Prevent Blindness America advises athletes to avoid wearing regular eyeglasses while playing sports, as they could shatter on impact. The organization also suggests looking for eye protectors that are padded or cushioned along the brow and bridge of the nose, so they won’t cut or dig into the skin upon impact. Lastly, all sports eye protection should have 100 percent ultraviolet protection in order to protect your eyes from the damaging rays of the sun.
Now that you’re aware of the realities of eye-related sports injuries, we recommend doing your research and finding the right eye protection for you and your child. And if you ever do experience a sports-related injury, head straight to your nearest emergency room and make sure to follow up later with an eye doctor.
Please contact us if you’d like to learn more, or to schedule an eye exam.