Protect Eyes During Sports Activities

Posted by CooperVision on Thursday, April 19, 2012

Did you know that eye injuries are the leading cause of blindness in children in the United States? Most of these eye injuries are sports related. In fact, most eye injuries among kids ages 11-14 occur while playing sports. Of these eye injuries, almost 90% of them could have been prevented with the use of protective eyewear.

First, an eye exam before enrolling a child in any sport is important. An eye exam done by an eye care professional can help detect preexisting eye conditions in athletes. After an eye exam, an eyecare professional can recommend the best protective eyewear for that patient.

Protective eyewear includes safety glasses and goggles, safety shields, and eye guards designed for a particular sport. While protective eyewear does not include contact lenses, protective eyewear can easily be worn over them. In fact, all active children are encouraged to wear protective eyewear; not just children who need vision correction. Here is a breakdown of sports according to eye injury risks:

High Risk

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Boxing
  • Hockey
  • Paintball
  • Racquetball
  • Softball
  • Squash

Moderate Risk

  • Football
  • Golf
  • Badminton
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Fishing

Low Risk

  • Bicycling
  • Diving
  • Skiing
  • Swimming
  • Wrestling

The National Eye Institute provides a list of recommended protective eyewear for specific sports here. You can talk to an eyecare professional about the right type of protective eyewear for your child and to ensure proper fit. Remember, protecting eyes during sports can help prevent blindness and permanent eye damage. Make sure to talk about eye safety and sports with an eyecare professional for more information.

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On Eye is the contact lens blog from CooperVision. On this site, you will find insights about fitting, technology, and the business of contact lenses. The On Eye blog is designed to meet the needs of both Eye Care Practitioners and consumers. ECP and medical professional-specific portions of the blog will be password protected in order to protect and reserve the privacy of the profession. To read more about our terms of use, please see the Legal tab.

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