Firecracker injuries can cause serious and irreparable damage to vision. In India, firecracker injuries are common during the festival of ‘Deepawali’ where traditionally; firecrackers form an essential part of the celebrations.
Majority of people who are involved in firecracker injuries are adolescent children, males and commonly onlookers. Bombs followed by sparklers are most common cause of injury. Rockets and bombs are associated with serious injury.
Not wearing any protective eye wear is a very common mistake which we repent later.
Many of the injuries are caused as a result of negligence of those igniting the firecrackers. Some severe injuries are caused by malfunctioning of firecrackers. In some cases, the attempt to reignite or recover a failed device was the cause of injury. Absence of parental supervision, and failure to maintain safe distance from firecrackers were contributory in some cases of injuries. The other major cause of injury is the common practice of igniting firecrackers in the streets thus exposing passers-by to injury.
If an eye injury from fireworks occurs, remember:
- Seek medical attention immediately.
- Do not rub your eyes.
- Do not rinse your eyes.
- Do not apply pressure.
- Do not remove any objects that are stuck in the eye.
- Do not apply ointments or take any blood-thinning pain medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
An eye trauma is best handled by an eye specialist, try to reach a hospital at the earliest. Take a opinion from the doctor, even when you feel injury is minor.
The single most effective measure may be to restrict the fireworks to public open spaces (such as parks or playgrounds). Regulating the quality of firecrackers and promoting safe use via schools and media will also have a positive impact