April is Sports Eye Safety Awareness Month

Each year, an estimated 30,000 people are treated for sports-related eye injuries, according to data from Prevent Blindness. The number of sports-related injuries has been on the rise in recent years.

Sports-related injuries can range from corneal abrasion and bruising in and around the eye to more serious, vision-threatening injuries, such as retinal detachment, internal bleeding, and traumatic cataracts. Basketball, baseball, and air/paintball guns accounted for almost half of these injuries.

Wearing proper protective eyewear could prevent about 90% of these injuries.

The following recommendations can reduce the chances of eye injury:

  • Wear sports goggles with shatterproof polycarbonate lenses for basketball, racquet sports, soccer, and field hockey.
  • Wear a helmet with a polycarbonate face mask or wire shield for baseball, ice hockey, and lacrosse.
  • Choose eye protection that meets the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards.
  • Replace eye protection when damaged or yellowed. Wear and tear can weaken the lenses and cause them to lose effectiveness.
  • If you must wear glasses, try wearing sports goggles over them to protect your eyes and frames.

Wearing protective eyewear should become part of any athlete’s routine, just like putting on pads and other protective gear. Getting fitted with the proper sport-specific protective eyewear is the key factor in prevention. Please visit one of our offices to discuss the appropriate type of eyewear for your sport.

In the event that a sports-related injury occurs, please contact our office immediately at 800-282-3937 to be scheduled with one of our qualified eye physicians at any of our eight convenient locations.

Dr. Julia King is an optometrist who practices at the Lake Wales location for Eye Specialists of Mid-Florida. Dr. King is currently accepting new patients and her optical staff is always ready to assist patients with eyewear purchases.


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