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Sports and physical activities play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but they also come with potential risks, including eye injuries. Athletes, whether amateurs or professionals, often face the possibility of sustaining eye injuries that can have long-lasting effects on their vision. In this blog post, we will explore the five most common eye injuries for athletes and discuss preventive measures to keep your eyes safe during sports activities.

Corneal Abrasions:

Corneal abrasions are one of the most prevalent eye injuries among athletes. This injury occurs when the cornea, the clear front surface of the eye, is scratched or scraped. Athletes engaged in sports like basketball, soccer, or baseball, where there is a higher risk of getting hit by fingers, elbows, or other objects, are particularly susceptible. Wearing protective eyewear or goggles can significantly reduce the risk of corneal abrasions.

Orbital Fractures:

Contact sports such as boxing, mixed martial arts, or even basketball can lead to orbital fractures. An orbital fracture involves a break in the bones surrounding the eye, often caused by a direct blow to the face. Symptoms may include swelling, bruising, and changes in vision. Properly fitted protective gear, such as helmets or face masks, is essential to minimise the risk of orbital fractures.

Retinal Detachment:

Retinal detachment is a serious and potentially sight-threatening injury that occurs when the retina, the thin layer of tissue at the back of the eye, pulls away from its normal position. Athletes engaged in high-impact sports, such as football or boxing, are at an increased risk. Regular eye exams and early detection of retinal issues are crucial for preventing severe consequences. Protective eyewear can also provide an added layer of defense.

Chemical Eye Burns:

Certain sports involve exposure to chemicals that can cause severe eye burns. Swimming, for example, exposes athletes to chlorine, while other activities may involve exposure to cleaning agents or fertilisers. In the event of a chemical eye burn, it is crucial to flush the eye with clean water immediately and seek medical attention promptly. Wearing swim goggles or safety glasses when appropriate can prevent these types of injuries.


Hyphema is a condition where blood collects in the front part of the eye, typically between the cornea and the iris. High-impact sports like basketball, soccer, or hockey increase the risk of hyphema due to the potential for blunt force trauma. Athletes should wear appropriate protective eyewear, such as face shields or goggles, to reduce the risk of injuries leading to hyphema.

Prevention is Key:

While some sports-related eye injuries are inevitable, many can be prevented with the right protective gear. Athletes should prioritise using appropriate eye protection such as

  • Goggles
  • Helmets
  • Face shields

, depending on the nature of the sport. Coaches, parents, and sports organisations play a vital role in promoting and enforcing these safety measures to reduce the incidence of eye injuries.

Seek Professional Care:

If you’re an athlete who has experienced an eye injury eye injury on the field, court, or arena, it’s crucial not to underestimate its severity. Ignoring symptoms or attempting to self-diagnose can lead to complications and prolonged recovery. Our team is dedicated to providing comprehensive eye care, ensuring that you can get back in the game with confidence. Your vision is our priority, safeguarding the thrill of competition for athletes today and in the future. Give us a call today 0800 25 53 93.

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