Simple Things You Can Do to Educate the Public on Fireworks and Eye Safety
The Prevent Blindness Foundation recognizes July as Firework Awareness Month to advise the public about the risk of eye injuries when interacting with fireworks. Here's what you need to know about this cause, and how to share information about eye safety during Independence Day celebrations.
Fireworks are not a toy
Fireworks are often considered to be a "toy," and not fire. Many people think that they know how to handle fireworks correctly, but thousands of people each year are sent to the hospital due to firework injuries. Using fireworks incorrectly can cause major damage to your eyesight. Some injuries include burns on the eyelid or eyeball, infections, retinal detachment, or in severe cases, a ruptured eyeball. In 2014, there were nearly 10,500 people in the U.S. treated for injuries from fireworks, and around 1,300 were eye injuries . Each year, the number of eye injuries seem to almost double. It was said by the Consumer Product Safety Commission that in the past 15 years, 2016 saw the highest injury numbers on the Fourth of July with 11,600 people sent the hospital .
As a eye care professional, you can help prevent these injuries by sharing key safety tips to the public to protect eyes.
Firework safety tips:
- Always wear eye protection if you are setting off or in close range of fireworks
- Stand back around 500 feet
- Don’t let young children play around fireworks
- If the firework has been lit, but doesn't explode, leave it alone for a while until you know it’s not going to explode incase there is a delay
- If an eye injury occurs, quickly seek medical attention
Simple ways to share this information at your eye care practice
Today, social media outlets, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc., are effective ways to reach the public. In order to support Firework Awareness Month, Tweet or post a status showing your team’s support of Firework Awareness and the safety tips above. Not only will this kind of activity raise awareness for this very important month, but it will also serve as great social content that highlights your practice online.
You can send out an informative email about firework awareness to all of your patients. Use this email to remind your patients about the importance of regular eye exams and the other services you provide. Any opportunity to share relevant eye care information with your patients gives you more reason to communicate with them and form stronger bonds.
Sharing this information as an individual eye care professional
For employees and jobseekers, use this moment to show you’re on top of industry news and events. Share a social media update, like one of the click to tweets embedded in this article to let future employers see that you care about firework awareness.
There are many ways to ensure that the Fourth of July and the whole month of July is a safe month for eye health. Start by informing others around the precautions necessary to take around fireworks. Always be recruiting informed and caring employees who are interesting in participating in events that support eye safety.