Prevent Eye Injuries with these Fireworks Safety Tips

Did you know that fireworks cause 2,000 eye injuries every year? According to a  new study published in JAMA Ophthalmology, during the 19-year study period, fireworks caused more than 34,000 ocular injuries, and the most common injury was ocular burn.

We are on the heels of the official summer celebrations approaching, with Memorial Day as the first holiday to start the summer celebrations. Summer is the perfect time for family barbecues, and during a summer holiday, there might be fireworks involved. Eye injuries from fireworks can be especially severe because of the combination of force, heat, and chemicals. Following a few simple safety tips can help make for a safe, fun celebration this summer.

Fireworks Safety Tips

  • Know your local laws.
  • Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
  • Don’t buy fireworks packaged in brown paper – these are to be handled by professionals.
  • Light fireworks in an open, clear area away from cars and buildings.
  • Never let children handle sparklers.
  • Keep pets inside.
  • When you are done, douse all fireworks or sparklers with water.

Typical Eye Injuries From Fireworks

  • Burns
  • Scratches on Cornea
  • Ruptured Eyeball
  • Detached Retina

Types of Fireworks Most Linked To Injuries

  • Sparklers
  • Bottle Rockets
  • Firecrackers

**Sparklers seem like harmless fun, but they are responsible for about 1,400 eye injuries each year.

What to Do for a Fireworks Eye Injury?

Fireworks-related eye injuries can combine blunt force trauma, heat burns, and chemical exposure. If an eye injury from fireworks occurs, it should be considered a medical emergency.

  • Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Do not rub your eyes.
  • Do not rinse your eyes.
  • Do not apply pressure.
  • Do not remove any objects that are stuck in the eye.
  • Do not apply ointments or take any blood-thinning pain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen unless directed by a doctor.

At Gainesville Eye Associates, we honor our troops and their families this Memorial Day!

Please stay safe this holiday and enjoy the festivities.

Reference: American Academy of Ophthalmology and JAMA Ophthalmology