Coronavirus: Hand sanitizers can hurt children’s eyes, study claims – Times of India

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The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on all of us. Besides igniting a state of panic and chaos, the novel coronavirus also disrupted the order of our daily lives.

With the onset of the deadly virus, people have adhered to social distancing and continue to take all the precautionary measures necessary to control the spread of the virus. Masks, disinfectants and hand sanitizers have become a part of our day to day functioning.

But while it may be necessary to comply with these COVID-19 measures, it is also important to pay heed to the problems and health issues it can cause to our children. A recent study found that hand sanitizers, which is one of the most important tools to prevent COVID-19, is said to harm and hurt children’s eyes.


What does the study say?

According to the new study published on January 21 in JAMA Ophthalmology, the excessive use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers amidst the pandemic has raised serious problems of eye injuries among kids.

Additionally, the data provided by the French Poison Control Center claimed that eye injuries caused due to harmful chemicals in kids under the age of 18 were seven times higher than those who suffered with the same in the previous year.

The study reported, “In 2019, hand sanitizer accounted for just 1.3 per cent of all chemical eye exposure incidents in the pediatric database. By the end of 2020, that number was up to 9.9 per cent. Just one toddler in France required hospitalization for sanitizer in his eyes in 2019. In 2020, 16 children were hospitalized for such chemical exposure.”

Ways to protect your child?

While hand sanitizers are an important tool to tackle SARs-COV-2, it can also affect your child’s health negatively. That said, although the use of hand sanitizers must continue, while it is one of the only ways to contain the spread of the virus, as a parent you must try and lessen it’s harmful impact on our children’s health. Here are some ways you can do that.

– If your child is very young and little, make sure you give them the hand sanitizers yourself and make sure they disinfect their hands in front of you.

– While public places have automated hand sanitizing machines, make sure your children use them in your supervision.

– Try and make your child choose handwashing over hand sanitizing, whenever the former option is available.

– If your child is already suffering from a weak eyesight, make them wear glasses, as it can prevent the chemicals from entering the eyes.



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