As parents often tell their kids when they read in the dark or play with sticks in the forest, you only get one set of eyes. That goes for everyone. There is no such thing as a prosthetic eye, not one that actually works; at least not yet.

Eyes are fascinating, complex, and more durable than one would imagine, but they are not indestructible. Both disease and injury can limit or destroy a person’s eyesight and, once that happens, there might not be anything to do.

It is never worth taking a risk with your eyes and doing foolish things which could cause damage when some simple safety tips will promote eye health now and in the future.

Risks to the Eyes

The job of protecting children’s eyes belongs to parents, but soon these tots grow up and have to make some decisions on their own about whether to wear their sunglasses and hats and where to point bright objects. Industry professionals such as dentists and cosmetic surgeons who use lasers are responsible for their patients’ health, their own, and that of their assistants in the medical setting.

Job site managers must provide eye safety equipment for their employees and chemistry teachers are obliged to have an eye-wash kit on hand in their classroom and to show it to everyone just in case a teenager behaves disrespectfully with chemicals or becomes distracted. Many risks cannot be avoided, but there are manifold measures to protect eye health too.

Sun Protection

UV rays are damaging to everyone. While you need some Vitamin D every day for good physical and emotional health, no one should ever look directly at the sun or expose the skin and eyes to too much sunlight. Risk of damage directly to the eyes is real. A person can go blind permanently or temporarily following excessive exposure.

Cataracts and degeneration are also possible and likely if one does not wear sunglasses or protect his or her eyes by wearing a hat to shade the eyes. Squinting will not necessarily hurt your eyes, but it does cause wrinkles and headaches.

It is trendy to wear a hat backwards, but turn the brim around and provide your face with shade. This will limit sun exposure to the eyes and face where skin that is over-exposed to sunlight could develop over-pigmentation (sun spots), skin cancer, and early aging.

Reduce the risk of burning too: sunburns can be as dangerous as any other sort of burn and overheating can lead to disorientation and nausea. Not only your eyes benefit from paying attention to eye health but also your skin.

Wear sunglasses when you are exposed to bright sunlight. Take special care to wear them when a surface reflects beneath the brim of your hat into your eyes such as water, sand, or snow. Choose sunglasses which provide 100% UV protection and cover the periphery of your vision as well as the very front. If necessary, invest in prescription snow or swimming goggles.


Protection at Work

A responsible employer at an industrial site or anywhere that debris is regularly flying should enforce the use of safety glasses. He is required by law to do this, so if you feel your employer is neglecting this duty, report him to your national workers’ safety organization.

In the meantime, provide your own eyewear. Safety glasses can be purchased inexpensively from a hardware shop or an online safety store. They supply lenses made from hardened material such as polycarbonate which does not shatter if metal, wood, or sparks hit it.

Keep these objects from your eyes. If glass, metal, or wood is lodged in your eyes a surgeon might be able to remove it and spare your eye but it is likely your vision will be permanently affected. Infection is also a risk when eyes become injured.

Protection in Medical Settings

Lasers burn very hot and can damage a patient’s eyes after a very short period of exposure. Regular glasses are no match for them. Doctors, dentists, and cosmetic surgeons wear sunglasses to prevent laser lights from coming into direct contact with their eyes.

They should also supply sunglasses to their patients if they are super-heating braces to a person’s teeth, performing laser removal of a facial scar, or conducting any other treatment with the use of these tools.

Diseases of the Eyes

One risk of diabetes is sight loss. Doctors are concerned about the prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes for many reasons and this is one of them. Glaucoma and other conditions can be prevented or treated by altering a diet rich in artificial ingredients, refined foods, and sugars in order to restore blood-sugar balance and regular insulin production in one who is not born diabetic.

Diabetes Type 1 is not caused by dietary issues but diabetics must regulate how they eat. Even otherwise healthy diabetics can fall victim to glaucoma, however.

Eye Checks

Visiting an optometrist regularly is a way to catch eye diseases in the early stages. An optometrist is sometimes the first person to detect other health issues because veins behind the eyes are fully visible. Doctors are able to detect plaque in the veins, a sign of heart problems, inflammation, and other issues which could be the warning signs of life-threatening illness.

They also detect short- and long-sightedness so that individuals can enjoy reading and other activities without suffering from headaches. Students whose grades dip or athletic performance slips often discover they are short-sighted and are able to restore grades or their average goals, baskets, or runs when their eyesight is fully restored by prescription glasses or contact lenses.