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SPORTS & EYEWEAR: PLAYING IT SAFE

Prevent Sports-Related Eye Injuries
Each year 38,000 sports-related eye injuries are reported in the United States.  Experts say that 90% of them could be prevented.  

A survey by the Vision Council of America reports that nearly 9 in 10 people (89%) believe children should regularly wear protective eyewear when playing sports, yet just slightly over 1 in 3 (36%) report that their children actually do.

Sports Eyewear Should be Standard Equipment
Of course, nothing can  prevent all sports-related eye injuries.  But simply making sports eyewear a part of athletic uniforms can significantly reduce the likelihood of potentially sight-damaging injuries.

Anyone participating in these sports and activities should wear eye protection:  Prevent Sports Related Eye Injury

  • baseball
  • softball
  • racquetball
  • tennis
  • badminton
  • soccer
  • football
  • ice hockey or street hockey
  • basketball
  • lacrosse
  • archery
  • fencing
  • boxing
  • karate

In addition, any other activities that involve a ball or racket, rough contact with other players or high speed travel should require protective eyewear.

Watch Out For The Sun 
Ultraviolet light from the sun, even in winter, is a danger in all outdoor sports.  UV light contributes to diseases such as cataracts and tumors that affect parts of the eye.  Outdoor enthusiasts can also get "sunburn" on their eyes (called keratitis).  Keratitis is very painful, and it can cause long-term  damage to the retina.

Choose Sports Eyewear Carefully
Protective eyewear must be made of the proper materials and fitted correctly for each wearer.  Here's what you should look for:

  • padded or rubber bridges to keep the goggles comfortable
  • deep-grooved eyewires to keep the lenses from falling out of the frame if hit hard
  • a face-formed shape to provide a wider field of view
  • headband attachments to keep the frames form slipping
  • lenses made from polycarbonate - a type of clear plastic that is impact resistant
  • 100% UVA and UVB protection