Prevent Blindness Urges Proper Eye Protection in the Home, Yard and Garage to Help Prevent Eye Injuries

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Prevent Blindness Releases At-home Eye Injury Prevention Tips as Part Efforts to Help Educate Public on Steps to Take to Avoid Painful and Costly Injuries

Home Eye Protection

“We strongly encourage everyone to always wear eye protection when working in or around the house,” said Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness.

In 2013, more than 94,000 adults and children were treated in hospital emergency rooms in the United States for eye injuries from products. Many of these products are used in and around the home, including power tools and cleaning supplies.

Prevent Blindness has declared October as Home Eye Safety Awareness Month to help educate the public on steps that can be taken to avoid painful and costly injuries. Free information can be found at the group’s dedicated web page, PreventBlindness.org/eye-safety-home.

According to information from Prevent Blindness, the top categories contributing to eye injuries include:
1.    Power tools
2.    Welding tools
3.    Workshop Grinders, Buffers or Polishers
4.    Manual Tools
5.    Bleach

“We strongly encourage everyone to always wear eye protection when working in or around the house. Doing yard work, cleaning the house, or working in the garage without protecting your vision can have a tremendous negative impact for years to come,” said Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness.

Eye injuries can occur from a variety of common sources, such as flying debris from lawn mowers or trimmers, or splashes from household cleaners, paints or solvents. Prevent Blindness urges everyone to wear protective eyewear approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) when performing household activities. The eyewear should have the “Z-87” logo stamped on the frames.

Prevent Blindness recommends the following to help prevent eye injuries at home:

  • Wear eye protection when doing automotive work, including changing the oil, jump-starting a dead battery, or even when using bungee cords to secure items to the roof.
  • Secure rugs, remove tripping hazards and provide effective lighting and handrails to improve safety on stairs and walkways to reduce the risk of falls, especially in homes where seniors live.
  • Never mix cleaning agents. Read and follow all manufacturer instructions and warning labels and always use these products in well ventilated areas.
  • Wear safety glasses with side protection or dust goggles to protect against flying particles, and chemical goggles to guard against exposure to fertilizers and pesticides.
  • If you wear prescription glasses, many safety glasses or goggles will fit over your regular glasses. Regular eyeglasses do not always provide enough protection, and may even cause further injury upon impact.
  • Inspect and remove debris from lawns before mowing. Make sure others in the yard are wearing eye protection as bystanders can be hit by flying debris.
  • Welding or brazing requires special safety goggles or helmets. Consult your equipment instruction or supplier for the proper protection.
  • After any project, make sure hands are washed thoroughly before touching the eyes or face.

In case of an eye-related accident, Prevent Blindness also offers its “First Aid for Eye Emergencies” sticker in both English and Spanish, free to the public. The sticker is designed to fit conveniently inside a home’s medicine cabinet or glove box of a car.

For more information on home eye safety and eye protection recommendations, or to request a free copy of the First Aid for Eye Emergencies sticker, call (800) 331-2020 or visit preventblindness.org.

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Sarah Hecker
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