Ensure children's eye safety during fall sports season

Children are back in school, playing sports, and parents can take precautions to ensure their children's eye safety as they compete.

Although many parents are unaware of the risks posed to their child's eye safety, about 40,000 eye injuries take place in the United States during sports or recreational activities each year, says Prevent Blindness America. Some sport-related eye injuries lead to vision loss, with almost one-third of them occurring in children between the ages of 5 and 14, says the Kentucky Optometric Association.

“Eye injuries are the leading cause of blindness in children in America, and most injuries occurring in school-aged children are sports-related,” Benton optometrist Dr. Laurel Van Horn said in a KOA release. “The results of an eye injury can range from temporary to permanent vision loss, so it’s important that parents take the proper steps when their children play sports.”

Almost 90 percent of these injuries are preventable with proper use of eye protection on the playing field, says Van Horn. To prevent such injuries, the KOA provides the following tips for eye and vision safety while playing sports: Always wear protective eyewear, do not rely on street eyewear for protection, and refer to the American Society for Testing and Materials standards when shopping for protective eyewear. Click here to learn more or find an optometrist in your area.
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