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Tips to Prevent Sports-Related Eye Injuries

According to the National Eye Institute, eye injuries are a leading cause of blindness in children in the United States. Most of these eye injuries happen while kids are playing sports. The right protective eyewear while playing sports can prevent 90% of significant eye injuries for children and adults.  

Always consult an eye care professional or expert optometrist at The Eye Institute (TEI) to recommend the best eye protection for your sport and lifestyle. According to pediatric optometrist, Dr. Siva Meiyeppen, “it’s important to emphasize that regular glasses are not sufficient for sports protection, they have to be ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) certified protective eyewear.”

SnowboarderSports with a high risk of eye injury include: 

  • Baseball and softball - highest risk sport for ages 15 to 24 
  • Basketball (hard projectiles)
  • Fencing
  • Hockey (hard projectiles)
  • Mountain biking
  • Paintball, air rifle, BB gun
  • Lacrosse (hard projectiles)
  • Racquetball and squash - hard projectiles and highest risk sport for ages 25 to 64

Sports with a moderate risk of eye injury include:

  • Badminton
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Tackle football
  • Tennis

Sports with a low risk of eye injury include:

girl swimming
  • Diving
  • Gymnastics
  • Road biking
  • Skiing
  • Swimming
  • Track and field

Sports with intentional injury: 

  • Boxing 
  • Martial Arts

If an injury does occur, seek medical attention at a hospital, preferably one staffed by optometrists or ophthalmologists on call. 

If an injury does occur, contact your optometrist to examine the eye as soon as possible. The Eye Institute (TEI) offers emergency eye care services in addition to its general and specialty practices for its patients. During normal operating hours current TEI patients requiring urgent or emergency care should report to the Emergency Service in The Eye Institute for emergency triage.

If emergency care is required after hours, ONLY patients who have been examined at TEI in the past THREE years should call the after-hours number: 215.276.3035. If you are NOT a TEI patient, care after hours should be sought at a local hospital.

If you or a loved one needs treatment after a sports-related eye injury or is interested in purchasing protective eyewear, contact TEI today.