Each month, the American Academy of Ophthalmology observes topics to raise awareness of important eye health issues. For June, there are two important topics covered by the AAO, and as eyecare professionals, the team at Eyecare Medical Group also wants to highlight these topics for our patients.

The June observances are Firework Eye Safety and Cataract Awareness, two essential topics everyone should know about. Keep reading to learn more about keeping your eyes safe from fireworks and the basics of cataracts!

Fireworks Eye Safety Tips

Fireworks are exciting and beautiful, and they are a great way to celebrate important societal events and historical moments. But they can also be dangerous.

Protecting your entire body from fireworks is crucial, but you can also take specific steps to keep your eyes safe. Here are some useful tips eyecare professionals recommend: 

Keep a Safe Distance From Fireworks

While the exact distance you should stay away from fireworks varies, you’ll generally want to stay at least thirty feet away from ground fireworks and around one hundred and fifty feet from aerials. It’s always better to be further away, however, so err on the side of caution. 

Always Have Water Nearby

If you’re letting off your own fireworks, keep water on hand to flush out any debris or sparks that may enter your eyes

Don’t Set Them Off Near Your Body

When you purchase fireworks, you should never set them off in your hand or near your body. Always keep fireworks on the ground when lighting them. 

Cover Your Eyes if There is Any Debris

If you’re watching a fireworks show and notice debris falling from the sky, cover your eyes and move away from the area if it’s safe to do so. 

Following these safety guidelines will help keep your eyes, and the rest of your body, safe from fireworks. 

What You Need to Know About Cataracts

Cataracts are cloudy patches that develop on the eye lens, usually as a natural part of aging. While cataracts might not completely impact your vision at first, they usually worsen with time and can cause significant side effects and vision loss.

The most common symptoms of cataracts include:

  • Blurry or foggy vision
  • Haloes or glares around lights
  • Issues driving at night
  • Frequently changing prescription
  • Colors appearing faded 

You’re more likely to get cataracts the older you are, so as you age, you should keep up with regular eye exams. Glasses and contacts can help lessen the effects of cataracts, but many people require cataract surgery to remove cataracts and restore their vision. 

Keep Your Eyes Healthy This Summer 

Eye health is critical in the summer, as you’re probably outdoors more and exerting yourself in the sun. Taking care of your eyes with fireworks and other risk factors around is key.

It’s also crucial to care for your eye health and be aware of issues like cataracts throughout the year, as the majority of people will develop cataracts as they age. 

At Eyecare Medical Group, we offer ophthalmology services, including treatment of eye injuries and vision problems like cataracts. Call our office today to learn more or to schedule an appointment. 

Do you want to learn more ways you can help protect your eyes this summer? Schedule an appointment at Eyecare Medical Group in Portland, ME, today!