There is no doubt that the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has impacted our daily lives. More of us are working from home or staying at home as recommended by top health officials. For many of us, springtime includes tackling tasks such as cleaning, home improvements, gardening and other yard work. Did you know home projects like these could be a major threat to eye safety? According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), nearly half of all serious eye injuries occur at home, yet only 35 percent of Americans wear protective eyewear during projects that could pose a threat to their eyes. Here are some helpful tips to help keep your eyes healthy and protect your vision.
Spring Cleaning. It’s very important you are careful using oven sprays and bleach-based cleaners as they can permanently damage the surface of the eye. An accidental splash into the face can cause scarring and blindness. Household chemicals like lime dust, detergents, cleaners or bleach cause 125,000 eye injuries every year.
When using these hazardous solvents and chemicals at home, make sure the area is well ventilated and wear chemical safety goggles. Also, never make the mistake of mixing caustic substances or chemicals agents and always follow the manufacturer guidelines and warnings. Sometimes eye injuries still occur so, in the event of an eye injury, flush your eyes with water for 20 minutes to wash away the chemicals and seek medical attention at the earliest.
Home Improvement. Home repairs, yard work, cleaning and cooking caused more than 40 percent of eye injuries. More than a third of those injuries in the home happened in the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, living or family room. Be sure to stack all power tools and chemicals out of the reach of small children. All screws, nails, and sharp hand tools can shoot off accidentally while power tools can propel dirt and debris into the air, resulting in serious eye injuries that invite a medical emergency. So make sure they are in good working condition and store them carefully. It’s highly recommended to ALWAYS wear safety glasses while performing home improvement projects.
Yard Work. As temperatures begin to warm up, many will begin to plant a garden or flowers, spread mulch and take the lawn mower for a spin. Before undertaking any yard work like mowing the lawn or trimming the weeds, remove all the dirt and debris including branches, twigs and thorns to prevent potential eye injuries and wear safety glasses. Working outside in the sun can damage eyes just like objects, chemicals and dust.
Spring Allergies. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, your spring allergies may be adding to your anxiety about your health. One of the easiest ways to tell the difference between allergy and coronavirus symptoms is to check your eyes. If they are red, watery and itchy, these are probably signs of allergies. Coronavirus symptoms generally do not cause those uncomfortable itchy, watery eyes. Here are some tips to get relief from itchy, irritated or dry eyes:
Pink Eye. Have your ophthalmologist to diagnose your particular case. For viral conjunctivitis, you can reduce the discomfort by applying cool compresses to the eye and it should clear up on it’s own. For bacterial, follow your treatment plan (typically antibiotic eye drops). Also know that conjunctivitis is highly contagious. It’s important to follow these tips:
It’s very important for those at high risk to limit exposure and stay at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following these eye care safety tips will help maintain healthy vision. Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at (615) 340-4733.