Eye Injury Prevention - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Eye Injury Prevention

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Open your eyes now to preventing eye injuries this summer.

Doctors see an increase in accidental eye injuries when many people are simply

enjoying the sun, outdoor activities and events.

For one, while doing yard work --weed eating, mowing grass, picking up brush ---many times people don't think about the consequences of not protecting their eyes.

 UAB Ophthalmologist and corneal specialist, Dr. Kristen Bains says, anytime you are doing yard work you're at risk of an object causing damage to the eyes.

She says, she sees injuries related to rocks, infections from dirt and debris that could lead to permanent vision loss.

 To protect your eyes don't depend on some cool, dark shades...

Dr. Kristen Bains says make sure you're wearing the wrap around protective eye wear.

#2 THE SUN--

Too much sun is no fun for unprotected eyes. The ultraviolet rays can do more harm to your eyes over time more than you may realize.

 Dr. Kristen Bains says, "Sun exposure has been linked to several ophthalmologic problems including cataracts, age related macular degeneration, growth of the eye, tumors of the eye. You really can get skin cancer type tumors of the eye."

 To prevent it -- make it a habit to wear sunglasses that protect you from UVA AND UVB rays. Also, wear a wide brim hat.

3) While swimming at the pool or lake, eye experts have a special warning for contact lens wearers.

Don't wear contact lens while swimming or taking a shower.

Dr. Kristen Bains says, "All it takes is bacteria in our environment and an infection can get in and set up shop. It's an amoeba infection that is difficult to get rid of and over time could lead to the need of a corneal transplant.

4) Fireworks.

Every year, eye doctors see a lot of blinding eye injuries from fireworks.

Dr. Bains says damage to the eye by fireworks is never minor.

She says, "You can get a chemical injury or physical injury where an object ends up penetrating the eye and causing retinal damage, and that could lead to permanent visual loss."

The problem is people take the risk of lighting fireworks on their own.

Even by standers are at risk of an injury from fireworks.

Your best protection, leave it to the professionals.