It is often said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. In many ways, your eyes forge the colorful tapestry of life through which you perceive this beautiful world. As such, safeguarding these delicate organs when participating in sports or engaging in work-related activities is vital.
For that matter, Dr Manuel Abreu highlights the importance of proper eye protection during various activities and provides essential tips to guard your gaze.
Sports: The Risk of Eye Injuries
Sports enthusiasts, whether amateur or professional, can face a myriad of eye injuries if they fail to don appropriate eye protection gear. Some of the most common eye injuries sustained during sporting activities include corneal abrasions, blunt force trauma, penetrating injuries, retinal detachment, and eye socket fractures.
Guidelines for Sports Eye Protection
Depending on the sport, Dr Manuel Abreu states that different types of eye protection are available for effective defense against potential eye injuries.
Polycarbonate lenses have become the standard for sports eye protection due to their impact-resistant properties. Goggles, faceguards, and shatterproof lenses on sports glasses made from polycarbonate material can offer unmatched protection against flying objects or accidental collisions during sports activities.
Sports-Specific Eye Guards
Different sports have unique injury risks, so it’s important to utilize eye guards specifically designed for the sport you engage in. For example, basketball, racquet sports, and soccer warrant protective goggles, while sports like hockey and lacrosse require face cages or masks integrated into the helmet.
Secure and Comfortable Fit
Ensure your eye protection gear has a secure and comfortable fit, so it doesn’t get dislodged amidst the action. Adjustable straps and foam padding can provide a snug fit while preventing any discomfort.
Work-Related Hazards and Vision Safety
Occupational hazards could pose a serious threat to your eyes depending on the line of your work. Construction, manufacturing, and laboratory work are just a few industries where eye injuries are most common. Foreign bodies like dirt, dust, metal shards, chemicals, or radiation can all lead to eye injuries and irreversible damage.
Protect Your Peepers on the Job
Adhering to workplace safety guidelines and using appropriate personal protective equipment can drastically reduce the risk of eye injuries at work.
Safety Glasses And Goggles
Safety glasses, with or without prescription, should be worn whenever there’s a risk of flying debris, objects, or chemical splashes. Side shields or wraparound glasses offer extra protection against debris entering from the sides. It’s crucial to use goggles made from polycarbonate or trivex materials as they can resist impact while providing clear vision.
Face Shields And Helmets
For tasks involving chemicals, molten materials, and welding, face shields or helmets with visors are a necessity. This protective gear safeguards not only the eyes but also the face and neck against heat, chemical splashes, and radiation. For welders, helmets with auto-darkening features can adapt the shade depending on the welding process and protect against harmful UV and IR rays.
Regular Maintenance And UpkeepFinally, Dr Manuel Abreu recommends inspecting your eye protection gear regularly. This is needed to ensure it is free from cracks, scratches, and lens discoloration, and replace it if necessary. A damaged or improperly functioning eye protection device might not provide adequate safety during high-risk activities.