Now that we are approaching the holiday season, many of us have family, friends, and loved ones coming over. We want our house to look the best that it can, and this often means taking on long put-off home improvement projects. Whether it’s something as simple as replacing a broken door handle or as complex as building a piece of furniture, it’s important to consider your eye safety. It’s often the last thing we think about, but when you sustain an eye injury–you’ll wonder why you didn’t think about what to do beforehand. Read some tips on how to protect your eyes in the home.
Wear Safety Goggles When Repairing or Building
It may seem silly, but it makes things a whole lot safer. If you don’t own safety goggles, they’re usually available at any hardware store. Don’t rely on your eyeglasses to protect you, as they are not made to withstand falls, drops, or impact. They can even shatter, which could go into your eye and cause worse damage. If you’re working with tools, equipment, and materials, never take a chance! You wear gloves, long pants, steel toe boots, and other safety measures–why not protect your eyes as well? A thirty second job with the table saw could leave you with particles of sawdust in your eye or worse. If you’re going to be doing some serious DIY, consider polycarbonate safety goggles. They’re what the professionals use, and they will protect your eyes from damage. Additionally, if something does pierce your eye, do not remove it, rub, or touch your eye. Cover the eye and head to the emergency room.
Cleaning Your Home for Guests? Read the Label!
Cleaning may seem like second nature to most of us, but when we try to deep clean for the holidays we might go overboard. Here are a few tips to make sure that you’re staying safe while using chemicals to clean. When you clean, always make sure to read the label. It will tell you the correct amount to use to clean your space (and how to dilute it for best results), if it needs to be wiped with potable water afterwards, and how to wash it out of your eyes should you have an accident. Read this thoroughly, especially before using a new cleaning product. Only wear glasses, not contacts, when you use chemicals. It will be much easier to flush out your eyes if you don’t have contacts to work around, and contacts can be affected by any gases from cleaning agents and be trapped.
Next, never mix cleaning products together! This is a big no-no because certain cleaning products mixed can release toxic gases that can cause chemical burns to your lungs and eyes. If you do happen to get any chemical in your eyes, flush out your eyes for at least 20 minutes and then go to the emergency room for medical attention. Lastly, use proper ventilation in your cleaning space. Open up a window, turn on a fan, and take a break between different applications (i.e. shower, sink, toilet, floor, etc.) to give the room a little time to air out. This is especially true in tiny bathrooms with no windows.
Lastly, there is a lot of cooking over the holiday season. We all know that we must be careful with the stove and any open flame, but there are a few other ways to be careful in the kitchen. Use a splatter shield to protect your eyes against any grease. This also protects your arms and hands from the painful spatter. Make sure to always wash your hands well after working with peppers and other spicy foods. This can cause serious damage to your eyes which could require drops or a visit to the emergency room. Heat can also be an issue when you open oven doors or the top of the grill. Heat will rapidly dry out your eyes and could even cause damage. Open doors slowly and turn your head away so that you are not met with a wave of heat. If you do get any food or condiments in your eyes, wash out with water for at least 20 minutes–especially if a spicy food.
Protect Your Eyes This Holiday Season
These tips should help you stay safe this holiday season, and still have a great time. If you do happen to have an accident, always go to the emergency room first. Do not call our office. From there, you can be recommended to a specialist, like an ophthalmologist, for a consultation. At this point, Dr. Clifford Myers is happy to work with you and set up an appointment time to see you. He will perform a comprehensive medical eye evaluation and find a solution for the problem. If you’re experiencing eye problems or just need an eye exam, call Dr. Clifford Myers, MD.