Eyewear for Coronavirus – All You Need to Know

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Image: (U.S. Air National Guard photo by David H. Lipp)

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, researchers have encouraged people to follow all preventive measures for effectively lowering the risk of contracting the virus. In addition, health agencies have also emphasized the need for additional steps such as wearing eyewear for coronavirus in people in certain professions and places.

At the moment, the majority of the people around the world are aware of the significance of following steps including wearing face-covering in public as well as maintaining social distance in order to control the ongoing health crisis.

The research from previous health epidemics as well as studies on the coronavirus has shown that such steps ensure the prevention and lower transmission of not only COVID-19 but all other contagious pathogens as well.

If people choose to follow all guidelines on preventing the infection from health agencies including the U.S. Centre for Disease Control and Prevention for their homes and while heading out, the risk of contraction is low.

However, this may not apply to all people. Those who are working in specific fields including health care need additional protection as they come into contact with patients directly.

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For instance, new research has shown that eyewear for coronavirus including goggles and face shields can also help with avoiding the infection and preventing its spread.

Studies on the coronavirus from the start of the pandemic showed that face masks are fundamental. The new research adds to it and argues that opting for eye shields or similar equipment can provide even more protection.

Wearing protective eyewear was also a suggestion by Dr. Anthony Fauci, who is the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and one of the leading members of the White House Task Force.

Dr. Fauci argued that in certain situations, people working outside of healthcare may also need eye protection.

This does not mean that people start wearing goggles instead of face masks but that goggles and face shields can be combined with masks for additional protection from the coronavirus.

But why is eye protection necessary? In accordance with the findings of a study, whose findings appear in the journal  JAMA Ophthalmology, showed that the coronavirus can also be contracted through eyes.

If an infected person sneezes or coughs and is not wearing a face shield, the droplets released can infect another person due to the presence of mucous membranes around the eyes.

According to the hospitalist and internist Dr. Matthew Heinz, contraction through the eyes is actually a big risk in treatment centers and hospitals, which is why health care workers are especially advised to wear a face shield.

On the other hand, the chances of the spread of the virus through the eyes are low, though it is not impossible especially in hospital settings.

The director of the NYU Langone Eye Center and chair of the Department of Ophthalmology at NYU Langone Health, Dr. Joel S. Schuman, states that even if the risk is low, it should be noted that the chances of spread of the virus are three times higher without protective eyewear for coronavirus than with it.

Therefore, it is recommended that people in certain professions that require a lot of face to face interaction with people or people living or working in areas with a high number of cases should consider wear goggles or a face shield for coronavirus.

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