Make sure you take care of yourself and your family during festival times. When the lamps are all burning and the children are running about with fireworks, make sure they stay safe.

During the festive season, particularly Diwali, one doesn’t come across even a road where the sparks from fireworks aren’t flying around. This can be rather dangerous. Of all the fireworks related injuries, 20 percent of them are related to the eyes. Most of them involve children. In this study, boys of ages 6 to 10 were approximately 56 percent of the children affected.

Firecracker can affect the cornea, lens and retina, like in the cases of corneal burns, intraocular foreign body (IOFB) injury, globe rupture, and internal eye injury, causing hemorrhaging and bleeding inside the eye.  It can lead to partial or complete blindness.

How do crackers affect the eyes?

The heat and sparks from the crackers can cause burns in and around the eye. The force with which the crackers burst can hurtle bits of debris that hit the eye. The greater the force with which something hits the eye, the greater the damage. Firecrackers have lots of chemicals in them and that also harms the eye. Just forgetting to wash your hands and accidentally ally rubbing your eyes can have bad results.

Most of the injuries are due to sparklers, bombs and rockets.

 How to say safe?

  1. Keep firecrackers away from the body while lighting them.
  2. Don’t try to be brave and burst crackers while holding on to them till the last minute. It’s better to have them blast on the ground than near your body.
  3. Parents should be by their kids at all times when crackers are being burst.
  4. Make sure there are no passersby when lighting a cracker.
  5. Don’t ever try to reignite a firecracker if they fizzle out.
  6. Don’t touch your eyes, or any part of your body for that matter, before washing hands thoroughly after bursting crackers.
  7. It’s also a good idea to wear protective goggles.

If you and or anyone near you has been hurt, immediately cover the injured eye with cotton and tape and rush to the hospital at once. Don’t wash your eyes, as if the damage is severe to the inner eye, it will worsen the condition. Speed is of the essence, as the longer it is delayed, the chances of permanently losing eyesight increase.

Follow safety measures and be careful while lighting all those firecrackers.

Have a safe and sound festive season!

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