It probably will come as no surprise that the sports-related eye injuries are very common among children. Now, with the kids back in school and taking part in sports as the weather gets cooler, it is a great time to review some eye safety tips with them.

Eye Protection is Always Must

One of the most important pieces of sports equipment your child should have and be encouraged to use is eye protection. No matter what type of sport they take part in, there is some type of eye protection they should be wearing. Regular every day prescription eye glasses or regular sun glasses are not enough to protect their eyes.

The right type of eye protection should be worn according to the type of sport. Sports goggles are recommended for such sports as:

  • Basketball
  • Handball
  • Badminton
  • Soccer
  • Racquetball
  • Tennis

For eye safety sake, it is even recommended to wear swim goggles if your child takes part on a swim team.

Wear Face Masks for Certain Sports

Certain sports or certain positions within a sport require extra protection that goes beyond what sports goggles can offer. For example, sports goggles may be fine while playing baseball, but if your child is a catcher, they should wear a full face mask. And when it comes time to bat, your child should wear a face guard that is attached to their batting helmet.

Other sports that require further protection to avoid eye injuries include:

  • Football – helmet with attached face shield
  • Ice hockey – helmet with full face protection
  • Lacrosse – helmet with full face protection

Make Sure Eye Protection is Rated

Make sure that your child’s sports goggles or protective sports glasses have polycarbonate lenses, which are shatterproof. These eye protectors should have been tested to meet the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards or Canada Standards Association (CSA) standards for racquet sports.

What to Do If an Eye Injury Occurs

A cold compress can be lightly applied for a black eye caused from blunt trauma. If there is small debris in the eye, it can be flushed with clean water.

If a serious eye injury occurs, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention. The eye should be covered with a clean cloth to prevent further injury on the way for treatment. If there are any objects stuck in the eye, they should not be removed.

If your child experiences an eye injury outside of normal business hours, do not wait to be seen by a doctor. After emergency treatment, make sure to schedule an exam with an eye doctor as soon as possible. Contact Valley Eyecare Center at (602) 955-2700 to schedule an appointment