Protecting your eyes from injury is one of the most basic things you can do to keep your vision healthy throughout your life.
You may be somewhat aware of the possible risks of eye injuries, but are you taking the easiest step of all to prevent 90 percent of those injuries: wearing the proper protective eyewear?
If you are not taking this step, you are not alone. According to a recent national survey by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, only 35 percent of respondents said they always wear protective eyewear when performing home repairs or maintenance; even fewer do so while playing sports.
If you have suffered an eye injury, have an ophthalmologist or other medical doctor examine the eye as soon as possible, even if the injury seems minor.
Eye Injury Facts and Myths
- Men are more likely to sustain an eye injury than women and most of those surveyed by the American Academy of Ophthalmology got this right.
- Perceptions were off on where most eye injuries occur, however. The persistent belief was that eye injuries are most common on the job and especially in the course of work at factories and construction sites. In fact, nearly half (44.7 percent) of all eye injuries reported during the fifth-annual Eye Injury Snapshot (conducted by the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Ocular Trauma) occurred in the home.
- More than 40 percent of the injuries reported were caused by projects and activities such as home repairs, yardwork, cleaning and cooking. More than a third (34.2 percent) of injuries in the home occurred in living areas such as the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, living or family room.
- More than 40 percent of eye injuries every year are related to sports or recreational activities.
- Eyes can be damaged by sun exposure, not just chemicals, dust or objects.
Ophthalmology and Eye Injuries
Nearly a dozen ophthalmology organizations are working together to help reduce the rate of eye injuries by encouraging people to wear protective eyewear.