According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, nearly 2.5 million
people suffer eye injuries every year in the United States, and about
one million people will lose at least partial vision as a result. Nearly
half of all eye injuries occur at home.
October is Eye Injury Prevention Month, and we want to be sure you know
how you can prevent common eye injuries. Common eye injury risks in and
around the home include:
- Hazardous chemicals and solvents found in cleaners and other household products.
- Hot grease or oil that splatters when cooking.
- Using hot objects such as curling irons around the face.
- Slips and falls.
- Working with tools.
- Yard work such as lawn mowing, using a power trimmer or edger and trimming
hedges and bushes.
- Children’s toys such as BB guns, darts, bows and arrows and other
Preventing common eye injuries
Many of these eye injuries are preventable when proper safety precautions
are followed. Here are a few simple tips to prevent eye injuries in your
home and elsewhere.
- Always wear protective eyewear any time you use chemicals or when your
eyes might be exposed to flying objects, particles or dust.
- Use caution with chemicals and cleaners. Do not mix products, and carefully
read the labels to know what to do if the product gets in the eyes.
- Secure loose rugs, railings and other items around the home that may cause
someone to slip and fall.
- Prior to mowing or doing yard work, check the lawn for small rocks or other
items that could become a projectile.
- Do not use damaged tools. Always supervise children using tools, including
pencils, scissors and knives.
- Use grease shields when cooking with hot oil to protect against splattering.
- Avoid children’s toys that might involve some sort of a projectile
like darts or BB guns.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that every household have
at least one pair of ANSI-approved protective eyewear to be worn when
doing projects that may put the eyes at risk. ANSI-approved eyewear meets
the American National Standards Institute eye protection standard and
can be purchased from most hardware stores. Look for the mark “Z87”
on the eyewear to ensure they are ANSI-approved.
If you suffer any type of injury to your eye, see your eye doctor immediately
to rule out any damage to the eye—even if your symptoms are improving.
Always remember to wear protective eyewear when performing tasks around
the house, working in the yard, playing sports and swimming. Doing so
can help protect your eyes from damage caused by an eye injury.