This post is by Bernie Carr, apartmentprepper.com
I found out one of my co-workers had to take an extended leave because he has an eye injury that requires surgery. I heard he had gotten hit in the eye while playing sports. This got me to thinking that in a major disaster, having an eye injury would really make life even more difficult.
When you first think about preparing for disasters, eye care rarely comes to mind. But if you really consider it, you would be quite helpless if something were to happen to your vision in a disaster situation. Glasses and contact lenses may not be readily available, and you may not be able to get proper medical care if you are in the midst of an emergency.
Here are a few eye care tips to get you started:
- Get your eyes checked on a regular basis. Most insurance plans cover eye exams annually.
- Keep an extra pair of glasses and/or contact lenses in your first aid kit or car, in case of emergencies. I keep last years prescription glasses as my backup pair just in case.
- When cooking or canning, keep your face at a safe distance from the steam when you open or lift any lids. This sounds may seem so basic and common sense advice, but something that is often forgotten.
- Keep toddlers away from stoves that have pots containing boiling liquids or frying oils. This is another one that seems like it’s not worth mentioning, but I actually know a couple whose toddler pulled a pot of boiling water from the stove and got severely burned. They were both in the kitchen getting ready for Thanksgiving, but it happened in seconds. The little boy had third degree burns; fortunately he has since recovered.
- On the same note, keep young kids away from toys or tools that have sharp points or edges, until they are old enough to teach the dangers of “running with scissors.”
- Get an overall health checkup. Diabetes and high blood pressure can have complications that are detrimental to vision.
- Avoid touching your eyes with dirty hands.
- Do not share eye makeup or grooming tools such as lash curlers.
- Be conscious of activities that can potentially damage your eyes or harm you, and wear protective eye wear or safety glasses accordingly:
- Chopping wood
- Mowing the lawn
- Hunting or Target Shooting
- Carpentry work
- Environmental cleanup or anything that involves chemicals
- Exposure to bodily fluids
Ordinary prescription glasses do not protect you from impact, flying debris or noxious chemicals – you need to wear safety goggles over them. For flying debris or chemicals, find ANSI-approved (American National Standards Institute) eye wear. These can be found at hardware or home improvement stores, and the rating is indicated on the lens or frame. Standards for workplace safety glasses are set by OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration). Make sure the safety glasses fit properly.
4. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from damaging UV and UVB rays.
Vitamin A, B complex, C, D and E are all important to eye health. In addition, bilberry, a plant extract, helps protect eyes; and lutein, which is a plant pigment, is said to risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. Omega 3 fatty acids are also beneficial to eye health. I am currently trying out Vision Support 1000 Lutein Eye Supplement, which I will be reviewing shortly.
Not convinced? Watch the Twilight Zone episode “Time Enough at Last”
Our eyes are fragile, yet we don’t think about them much, until something happens. They weren’t lying in Christmas Story when the adults told Ralphie “You’ll shoot an eye out!” Wearing eye protection will help prevent that from happening.
© Apartment Prepper 2016
Updated from a previous post that was originally published on Dec 11, 2013