September is Sports Eye Safety Month

September is Sports Eye Safety awareness month and we encourage anyone who participates in sports – children and adults alike – to remember to protect their eyes. Sports are the leading cause of eye injuries in children under the age of 16. Many people are unaware of how serious sports injuries are, and that these kind of injuries could lead to irreversible eye damage. Most sports-related eye injuries can be easily avoided by simply wearing proper eye protection.

For all age groups, eye injuries occur most frequently during such sports as basketball, baseball, racquet sports, soccer and field hockey. Protective eyewear with polycarbonate lenses that have been tested to meet safety standards should be worn during such athletic activities. Protective eyewear can help prevent injuries such as fracture of the eye socket, scratched corneas, swollen retinas, and even cataracts caused by trauma to the eye. 
 
Keep your eyes protected while playing your favorite sports by following these simple rules. 
 
1. Choose sports eyewear that has padding around the eyes, brow and bridge of the nose to help prevent any skin cuts. 
 
2. Never play sports with your regular prescription glasses. Eyeglasses tend to be very fragile and can shatter on impact, which could send shards of glass into your eyes. 
 
3. Make sure you see your eye doctor to consider the different types and options of sports eyewear that can work best for you. 
 
4. If you have reduced vision in one eye, consider the risks associated with injuring your stronger eye before participating in any high risk sports. 
 
Sports-related eye injuries can lead to long-term problems with your vision. That’s why it is always a good idea to take the proper safety precautions when playing your favorite sports. Your eyes are one of the most important organs and by taking care of them on the playing field you can protect your eyesight for many years to come. 

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Kerry Solomon, MD

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