September is Home Eye Safety Awareness Month. Prevent Blindness America has declared this as a month to make people aware of the dangers around the home that can damage the precious gift of sight. According to Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness America, it only takes a moment to lose your eyesight in an accident at home: “All too often, when we’re working around the house and doing chores that we've done a thousand times before without incident, we forget about the risks we take by not protecting our eyes. But all it takes is one split-second accident that could damage your vision for a lifetime."
90% of eye injuries are preventable by wearing the proper eye protection. The AAO and the American Society of Ocular Trauma (ASOT) recommends that every home have at least one pair of American National Standards Institute (ANSI) approved eyewear in order to prevent eye injuries around the house. The eyewear should have the "Z-87" logo stamped on the frames and can be found at hardware stores and home building centers.
Protective eyewear should be used for tasks such as using power tools, rotary mowers, line lawn trimmers, or hammering on metal, and when using any chemical. Wearing protective eyewear especially during yard and garden work is critical because 40% of all eye injuries sustained at home happen during these chores. Even if you do wear eye protection during such tasks, make sure to be mindful of passersby such as small children. If they approach you, shut off all power tools.
If you, or a loved one does suffer an eye injury at home, make sure to talk to an eye doctor immediately.