Take a deep breath my fellow parents – winter break is coming. Along with sledding season and frolicking in the snow comes the inevitable renewed sense of worry for our children’s safety. Even my toddler, who stays in the same daycare all year-round, seems to be running around harder, faster, and engaging in more dangerous activities as winter approaches. It might be because more time spent at home leads to cabin fever, or because there are so many exciting/dangerous winter activities outdoors. Either way, I am equipped with enough Band-Aids to patch up the entire District of Colombia for the remainder of the season. I have also managed to figure out the best winter boots to buy that won’t get soaked through after 5 minutes of shoveling – a feat I never thought I’d achieve with anything but bulky rubber galoshes. It’s time to ponder a new safety issue that I honestly never considered for the winter time – protecting eyesight!
Between accidents at home involving common household products to outdoor sports-related injuries, there is no shortage of potentially dangerous situations, particularly in the winter. Here are some steps you can take to avoid eye injuries in the home and outdoors:
- Avoid purchasing (or accepting as gifts) any projectile toys that can be a hazard (i.e. darts, pellets, etc.).
- Keep harmful household products in an inaccessible place. (The level of accessibility will change as your child grows. Do not assume that last year’s “hiding place” will be sufficient for this year.)
- Make sure you don’t have any obviously sharp furniture edges and that you have put in place any necessary protective gates.
- Insist that your children wear proper safety goggles for indoor and outdoor sports.
As always, if you have any questions regarding what type of protective eyewear to pursue for your child, please do not hesitate to make an appointment with one of our very knowledgeable and friendly Optometrists. Believe it or not, taking the few precautions listed above will help to tremendously lower your child’s risk of injury. Have fun transitioning from bagging up heaping piles of leaves to helping put the final finishing touches on ol’ frosty!