News posted 30 October, 2019

Avoid firework fiascos with the help of MFT hospitals

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As many gear up for Bonfire Night celebrations tonight, hospital attendances are also set to increase at a number of sites across Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT).

The Burns Units at Wythenshawe Hospital and Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital (RMCH) expect to see an average increase of 15% in admissions during this period.

The centres at Wythenshawe Hospital and RMCH are purpose-built facilities providing care for adults and children. Firework and bonfire related injuries are common at both hospitals for minor and major burns injuries.

The hospitals see a rise in treating deep burn injuries at this time of year from fireworks, which often require surgery and flash flame burns from bonfires, which do not always require surgery.

Mohamed Ismail Aly, Consultant Burns and Plastic Surgeon at MFT said: “All burns cause some form of skin scarring, whether superficial or deep, so please be careful if you are planning your own fireworks display or attending a bonfire.

“Burns injuries can leave devastating effects on adults and children so I urge you all to take extra care over this period. Always stay a safe distance from any fire source and NEVER use accelerants. Be wary of children around fireworks and bonfires and never allow them to handle either of them.”

It’s also that time of year where treacle and toffee apples are back on the supermarket shelves, and The University Dental Hospital Manchester have some top tips for enjoying your sweet treats;

  • Make sure you brush your teeth before bed and at least one other time during the day.
  • Eat sweets at meal times and not in between to reduce the risk of tooth decay.
  • Don’t eat sweets within an hour of bedtime. When we sleep, our mouths become drier and we lose the protective effect of saliva. This is why eating in the hour before bed puts you at an increased risk of tooth decay as the sugar remains in the mouth overnight.

The trick is to not over indulge with sweets and maintain good standards of brushing and flossing. The treat is that this will enable you to keep a healthy and happy smile for many years to come.

Halloween Horrors!

This time last year, Manchester Royal Eye Hospital (MREH) saw an increase of 65% in attendances at the Emergency Eye Department for corneal injuries – which can be caused by contact lenses or glitter.

Spooky contact lenses are a popular addition to enhance traditional Halloween costumes. Cosmetic contacts can often result in eye injuries, many of which are treated at our Emergency Eye Department.

Prajakta Gaikwad, Unit Manager, Emergency Eye Department, Manchester Royal Eye Hospital gave this advice: “At this time of year we have a number of patients coming through our emergency department who have developed eye conditions following fancy dress mishaps including contact lenses and glitter, and firework related injuries.

“If you are using cosmetic contact lenses, please ensure they are approved by an appropriate clinician, and your hands are clean when they are fitted and removed from your eye. If you are planning your own firework display, make sure you shield your eyes with protective eyewear to avoid injury to the eye.”

If people were considering cosmetic contacts as part of their fancy dress, we urged them to follow our easy guidelines to ensure you keep their eyes healthy:

  1. Visit an optician for your costume contacts
    Novelty contact lenses are widely available on the high street but it is illegal to sell these without an optometrist, dispensing optician or doctor’s supervision. The contact lenses will need to be checked that they fit correctly, or they could potentially be difficult to remove and damage the cornea (front part of your eye).
  2. Be careful with glitter and glue
    False eyelashes can dramatically change your look, but application of the glue can result in an allergic reaction that causes eyes to become red, watery, itchy and swollen. Be careful with glitter too as this can scratch the front surface of your eye and lead to infection.
  3. Keep them to yourself
    By sharing your lenses with others, you have more chance of catching gruesome germs such as eye infections.
  4. Take them out before taking yourself to bed
    Do not sleep whilst wearing contact lenses and do not to wear them in the shower or sauna as this increases the risk of infection.
  5. Keep an eye out for the warning signs
    If you have a reaction to the lenses such as redness, itching, swelling or irritation, remove your lenses immediately.