The American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Ophthalmology and American Optometric Association all strongly recommend protective eyewear for all participants in sports in which there is a risk of eye injury.
Every year more than 600,000 eye injuries occur that are related to sports and recreation. Furthermore, a statistic compiled by Prevent Blindness of America revealed that in 2001 38,000 people suffered a sports eye injury serious enough to require treatment in an emergency room. And this number does not take into account the number of people suffering injuries who were treated in a primary care doctor’s or eye doctor’s office, or just at home.
Children 5-14 years old represent the largest segment of sports-related eye injuries. The sports that children of this age group love to play the most are basketball, baseball/softball, soccer, volleyball, and football, and with the exception of football they all possess a moderate to high risk of eye injury. For example, basketball players between the ages of 1 and 15 have approximately 6,522 eye injuries a year.
The good news is research shows that 90% of these injuries are preventable by the use of appropriate protective sports eyewear. The American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Ophthalmology and American Optometric Association all strongly recommend protective eyewear for all participants in sports in which there is a risk of eye injury. And you shouldn’t confuse “street wear” with protective eyewear. In fact, participants using “street wear” (corrective eyewear or sunwear that does not conform to ASTM F803 standards) are at a far more severe risk of eye injury than participants who use no eye protection at all.
So let’s all play it safe and make protective sports eyewear part of every uniform.
A prescription for a football visor is written based on medical need and gives permission for use of a visor during games. Visors are intended to shield and protect the eyes, but do not correct vision. If vision correction is needed for optimum sports performance, contact lenses are the best option, followed by special sports goggles designed to fit under helmets. Please schedule an appointment to obtain a prescription for a visor and discuss contact lenses or goggles for use in sports.
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