By Dr. Mark A. Sibley
Eye injuries are among the most common threats to a child’s vision. Most eye injuries happen during sports or recreational activities, and 90 percent of all eye injuries can be prevented. It is important for parents and children to become aware of the dangers and to take these necessary precautions:
• Make sure your children wear protective eyewear when participating in activities or sports, such as baseball, basketball, soccer, hockey, tennis, or racquet ball.
• Supervise children when they are handling potentially dangerous glass or pointed items such as pencils, pens, scissors, etc.
• Do not allow children to play with darts, bows & arrows, BB guns, guns or fireworks.
• Keep all sprays and chemicals out of reach of small children.
• Select games and toys that are age appropriate.
If an eye injury occurs, it is always best to have an ophthalmologist, pediatrician, or emergency room physician examine the eye as soon as possible. Children with serious eye injuries should always be taken quickly to the nearest emergency room or urgent care facility for evaluation.
EYE First Aid
• If something gets into your eye, such as sand or dust, do not rub your eye. Wash your eye with water to get the object out.
• If your eye gets hit by a ball or a fist, put cold cloths on your eye for 15 minutes. This will make the swelling go down and the eye won’t hurt so much. You should also go to the doctor.
• If an object, such as a stick or a pencil, gets stuck in your eye, do not pull it out. Put a loose bandage on your eye. This is very serious. You need to go to the doctor right away.
• If a chemical, such as cleaning fluid or battery acid, splashes in your eyes, wash out your eyes with water for at least 10 minutes. You need to go to the doctor right away.
Dr. Sibley has over 20 years of experience in the ever-evolving field of ophthalmology. He is a board-certified ophthalmologist and fellow of the American College of Surgeons, highly trained to perform the advanced operations offered by the Florida Eye Center. He is medical advisor to the Society to Prevent Blindness and to the American Diabetes Association, and team ophthalmologist for the Tampa Bay Rays. Send Dr. Sibley an email at DrSibley@FloridaEyeCenter.com. To make an appointment, call the Florida Eye Center at (727) 895-2020. Florida Eye Center offers Lasik Surgery, Cataract Surgery, Glaucoma Surgery, and much more.