When a natural disaster strikes, it is often necessary to leave home quickly. In the hurry to get children, friends, loved ones, and ourselves to a safer space, it is easy to forget even some of the most basic necessities. For men and women who wear prescription eyewear, that often means leaving behind those things necessary for maintaining and protecting optimal vision.
Vision is one of your most important senses. This is nowhere truer than during a natural disaster where clear vision can prove essential for maneuvering around or through dangerous situations. Yet, most natural disaster preparedness kits lack even the most basic of eye protection.
While having a disaster kit, bug out bag, or other emergency preparations in place is important, of equal importance is having an eye care kit ready to go if evacuation becomes necessary, services become unavailable, or supplies run short due to a natural disaster. The eye doctors at Seeta Vision Centers strongly encourage our patients to take a few moments and create a natural disaster emergency vision kit that can be accessed easily should the need arise.
The American Refractive Surgery Council suggests your natural disaster emergency vision kit contain:
- A pair of prescription glasses in a hard case. Even if you wear contact lenses, having prescription glasses allows clear vision in cases where other alternatives do not exist
- Antibacterial wipes for cleaning your glasses. Bacterial infections, common after a natural disaster, can cause vision problems and may even lead to blindness. Using antibacterial wipes to clean your glasses helps prevent this
- Extra contact lenses and contact lens solution. Daily disposable contacts are the easiest to maintain, but having several bottles of solution on hand in case you need to clean lenses is a good idea as well. Bottles may need to be thrown out after one use in cases of severe contamination risk
- Extra prescription and over-the-counter eye medications. If you regularly use an eye medication, be sure to have extra on hand along with any refill scrips you might have
- Water disinfecting tablets. Clean water is essential for cleaning your contact lenses. Washing lenses in what water is simply available can result in infection.
- Soap and hand sanitizer. Your hands should not be near your eyes unless they are clean. This is true for people who wear contact lenses and those who do not
- A copy of your prescription. As services are restored or in cases where temporarily relocating is required, having an extra copy of your prescription helps ensure you are never without needed eyewear
Because one of the biggest threats to vision during and in the aftermath of a disaster is infection, keeping hands and eyewear clean should remain a top priority. Packing paper towels in a plastic bag to wipe hands after washing will add an additional layer of protection. So too will making sure you have a disaster preparedness kit for everyone in your house who wears prescription eyewear.
You can reduce your risks of infection from prescription eyewear by choosing to have LASIK. Many emergency professionals have undergone laser vision correction for this very reason. Of course, LASIK won’t protect your eyes against infection from unclean hands, but eliminating the need for eyewear that is placed close to or inside of the eyes adds a layer of protection.
If you have a flex plan, now is a great time to contact our office to discuss LASIK – and not just for disaster preparedness. LASIK provides most patients complete freedom from glasses and contact lenses, helping ensure clear vision no matter what life may bring. If permanent vision correction sounds interesting to you, we would be happy to discuss all of your options during your next visit to our Fishkill or Poughkeepsie location.
To schedule an appointment at Seeta Eye Centers, please call 845-454-1025 today. We serve the Hudson Valley area with offices in Poughkeepsie and Fishkill.