Do you or your kids participate in sports? Do you wear prescription glasses, sports goggles, or contacts? Then you should know that April is Sports Eye Safety month! According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, there are nearly 30,000 sports-related eye injuries that are treated in U.S. emergency rooms every year. However, with the right protective eyewear, nearly all of these injuries could be prevented.

At Spectrum Eye Care, we understand that Colorado residents love staying active and participating in a wide range of sports, including baseball, hockey, skiing, snowboarding, and dozens more. So, we are passionate about helping our patients have access to high-quality, affordable eye care, including prescription sunglasses and custom goggles. If you play sports and need an eye exam, an updated prescription, or want to be fitted for custom sports eyewear, schedule an appointment with our optometrist today.

What Does Eye Protection Mean?

Even though it may seem like wearing regular glasses is enough to prevent an injury, your everyday prescription glasses could actually make an eye injury worse in the event of an accident while playing a sport.

  • Sports goggles are made with durable materials and the lenses are made with shatterproof plastic, called polycarbonate lenses. This makes them stronger, and they are capable of absorbing ultraviolet light. If a lens were to break or crack, there is less risk of debris flying into your eye and causing an injury.
  • Sports eye protection should shift the impact from the eyes and face to the skull without causing damage to the inside of the skull.
  • Your regular glasses are also more at risk of falling off, while eye protection that is designed for sports often have straps that fit around your head or ears to secure them in place.
  • The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) has created standards for eyewear in sports like baseball, basketball, lacrosse, field hockey, and skiing.

How to Prevent Sports Eye Injuries

If you play a sport, you’re probably well aware that there can be impacts (which is part of the fun, right?), and it can be difficult to avoid injuries. However, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Play with Sportsmanship at the Forefront – No dirty tricks or moves that could intentionally hurt other players.
  • Follow the Rules – Rules are there for a reason, and in sports, they are not meant to be broken.
  • Get in a Warm Up – Getting the blood pumping and your muscles warmed up can help prevent all sorts of injuries.
  • Stay Hydrated – Water is essential for our bodies and is crucial for great performance. Our eyes also require a lot of water to remain healthy.
  • Wear Proper Gear – Always wear the gear that has been designed for your particular sport, including eye goggles.

What to Do if There is an Eye Injury

If you do sustain an eye injury during a game or event, here are some of the biggest signs and symptoms that you should be aware of. If you experience any of these issues, visit an emergency room or your optometrist as soon as possible.

  • Loss of field of vision
  • Pain when moving an eye or eyes
  • Light flashes or floaters
  • Irregularly shaped pupil
  • Red and inflamed eyes
  • Halos around lights
  • Broken contact lens or eyeglasses
  • A foreign object is in the eye

Visit an Optometrist at Spectrum Eye Care in Colorado Springs

If you’re gearing up for the next sports season or if you’ve had an eye injury, you can count on the team at Spectrum Eye Care to provide exceptional service. We offer sports vision eye exams, we can create custom sports goggles, and fit you for prescription glasses and sunglasses. Whatever your sports needs are, we have what you need. Serving the greater Colorado Springs area, schedule your eye exam with us today.