Playing sports is an excellent way to keep your physical health strong, but many people forget that their eyes deserve attention too. Just as helmets and kneepads are important for participating in sports, so is protective eyewear. It may not be the coolest looking gear on the field, but it can prevent serious injuries such as a scratched cornea, fractured eye socket, or vision loss. And, while broken bones, strains and sprains will heal, your eyesight will not.
Knowing how important it is to protect your eye health, here a few tips to keep you safe on the field.
Choose the Proper Eyewear for the Sport
Each sport is different, so consider the best form of protection for your eyes. For example:
Baseball: Face guard, helmet, and sports goggles with 100% UV protection
Basketball: Sports goggles
Football: Eye guards and full face guard
Hockey: Helmet, face guard and sports goggles
Soccer: Sports goggles with 100% UV protection
Tennis: Sports goggles with 100% UV protection
Children in any sport should wear protective eyewear because they’re still young and uncoordinated. Plus, by getting your child used to wearing goggles, you instill safe habits for the future.
Wear to Buy Sports Goggles
Not all safety goggles have the proper protection, so be cautious about what you buy. The last thing you want is a false sense of protection. Talk to your ophthalmologist about the best place to purchase protective eyewear. He or she will probably point you in the direction of an optical store or sporting goods store.
Look for products that are designed for your particular sport. As you try them on, make sure they fit securely and comfortably. The best eye guards have cushioning along the eyes and edges of the nose. Also, choose products that offer UV protection so that your eyes are protected from the sun.
Caring for an Eye Injury
When playing sports, eye injuries are always a possibility. If you do become injured, place a towel over your eye to prevent further damage. Cuts and scrapes around the eye can be treated with Neosporin and bandages. Your eye, on the other hand, may need medical attention. Any type of trauma responds best with a cold ice pack and a trip to the doctor. From there, your eye specialist can recommend the best course of action for the injury.