By an unfortunate strike of fate, a 7 year old boy was ceased to play rugby because of the sports goggles he wears. Ryan Totten, from Colerane in county Antrim has already played rugby for his home town for 3 years. According to the experts, contact lenses could have saved him from exclusion.
According to the reports, Ryan wears sport goggles that meet EU & British safety standards to improve his vision. However, sadly, as per the IRFU rules (Irish Rugby Footbal Union) he was asked to leave the pitch due to his eyewear that bans players to continue participating in the contest. Current IRFU rules state: “In the interest of safety (of the player wearing the goggles and other players) and best practice, the wearing of glasses or goggles when participating in the contact format of rugby cannot be allowed.” The ban has left the boy embarrassed, upset & disappointed.
While the fact is unclear, what prevented the young sportsman to switch to contact lenses; optometrist & chairman of BBR Optometry, Nicholas Rumney stated that contact lenses could have been a better option. Commenting on BBC report that suggests that Ryan is too young to wear contact lenses, he explained that there is no global consensus on when to initiate contact lens wear. “There are no such age barriers”; he emphasized.
President of the British Contact Lens Association, Brian Tompkins, added: “While I’m not familiar with Ryan’s specific eye care needs, a child of his age should be able to wear contact lenses. I actually had two seven-year-olds in practice today for a contact lens review.”
Totten- the school boy pleas IRFU to change its stance because the forced prevention from playing Rugby for something he was made by God has left him broken & immensely sad.
Mr Tompkins told OT: “Any parent interested in getting contact lenses for their child, should speak to their eye care practitioner, who will be able to advise them if lenses are suitable for their child and if so, fit the appropriate lens."
Unless your child is a patient of critical eye disorders that render contact lenses incompatible, you can safely let your child wear prescription contact lenses. Don’t let the vision problems take young dreams away.