Open Your Eyes to Safety and Caution this Year during Diwali
Article by Dr. Susanta Chatterjee
MBBS , FRCS, D.OPHTHAL, Fellowship of L V Prasad Eye Institute
Diwali symbolises the spiritual victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance. From children to the eldest member of the family eagerly wait for this time of the year to arrive. But along with the celebrations the incidents of eye injuries and even loss of eyesight are being reported every year; it is crucial to take safety measures. In fact, eyes are the second most common affected area after hands and fingers.
Here are few tips shared by Dr. Susanta Chatterjee Head of Department of Ophthalmology MGM New Bombay Hospital Vashi which will help you have a safe Diwali!
- Irritation caused by smoke emitting crackers
Some major precautionary measures to be taken during bursting crackers are to fire them in open spaces, covering your eyes with goggles and wash your hands a number of times to protect yourself from harmful chemicals. Also diffuse used fireworks properly by soaking them in a bucket of water before disposal.
- Caution for people who wear contact lenses
Always remove your contact lenses before going out to fire cracker. Use a spare glass instead which can protect your eyes in a better way. Contact lenses may cause irritation and redness to the eyes if exposed to direct heat for a long time. An arm’s length distance need to be maintained while lighting firecrackers and at least few metres while watching.
- In case of an Eye injury
The first step should be to wash your eyes and face properly. Wash your hands thoroughly before splashing water on your face. Do not rub your eyes. If there is bleeding in the eye, use a patch to cover up the wounded area and immediately rush to a nearby hospital.
All types of crackers are harmful and any kind of cracker can be dreadful for your eyes. So it’s best to avoid highly combustive crackers.
- Injury leading to permanent vision loss
Any kind of cracker injury may harm the eye, which can result in permanent vision loss if the condition is severe. The damage of the eye by a cracker depends on the velocity of the cracker or the intensity by which it hits the eye, the second one is the chemical reaction in the eye and the third is the thermal burn, which is the heat that is caused by the cracker. Avoid sparklers that reach temperatures as high as 1000 degree centigrade- high enough to melt gold and cause serious injury.
- Be careful
Always burst crackers in an open space, wear goggles, wash hands with sanitizers. Children should be supervised while playing with crackers. Never take any injury lightly, visit an eye specialist and take professional help. Keep fireworks away from the face, hair and clothing. Keep a bucket of water and sand readily available for dousing in case of accidental fire.
WISH YOU A VERY HAPPY AND SAFE DIWALI!!!!!!!!!!
Dr. Susanta Chatterjee
Cataract Glaucoma & Refractive Surgeon
Head of Department of Ophthalmology
MGM NEW BOMBAY HOSPITAL VASHI