EYE SAFETY & THE FOURTH By Dr. Martha Jay, Ophthalmologist at Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals with offices in Mequon & Saukville, Wisconsin
The best season of the year is fast approaching: fireworks season! Wisconsinites can look forward to local city and town celebrations, larger ones on Milwaukee’s lakefront and even some very small family displays. However, it is important to take eye safety into consideration amidst all the “oohs and aahs” this summer.
Some tips for avoiding injury are obvious-don’t point the fireworks towards anyone, don’t let small children handle them and be sure to read the instructions carefully. Surprisingly our most common 4th of July injury does not come from improper handling of fireworks but from flying cinders. These types of burns can happen at large, professionally run shows as well as the small do-it-yourself variety.
Should you or someone in your family have such a problem, first rinse the eye thoroughly with water or artificial tears. If there is a change in vision or continued pain, a visit to an emergency room or with your eye care professional may be indicated.
Most cinder injuries are minor, in that they heal up without lasting damage, but they can be quite painful for hours. The key to rapid healing is to be sure no particles are left in the eye and to keep the eye lubricated with tear drops. If there is an actual burn, antibiotic eye drops or ointment are sometimes necessary. These would have to be prescribed by an eye care professional or an emergency room physician.
At Lakeshore Eye Care Professionals we are equipped to triage and treat many of these accidental summertime injuries, although we hope you don’t need our services this 4th of July season! Stay safe and happy celebrating!
Dr. Martha Jay is a board certified ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care including blade-free LASIK vision correction and small incision cataract surgery with premium lens implants. She welcomes patients of all ages into her practice and accepts most insurance plans.
For more eye care information, call 262-241-1919 or visit www.LakeShoreVision.com.