According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), each day approximately 2,000 American workers experience a job-related eye injury that requires medical attention. This results in more than $300 million a year in lost productivity, medical treatment and compensation. However, experts believe that 90 percent of these accidents can be prevented by wearing the right eye protection. The vision experts at Island Eye Surgicenter want to remind everyone about the importance of keeping the eyes protected in the workplace. Here, they offer several guidelines to prevent work-related eye injuries.
Take Precaution if You Work in these Industries
According to the AAO, approximately 40 percent of all work-related eye injuries occur in the following industries:
Individuals who work in these industries are at a heightened risk of eye trauma, vision loss and even blindness due to foreign objects (i.e., metal, nails, wood chips) or chemicals entering the eye. Individuals who work in the health care and janitorial industries also have an increased risk of developing serious eye infections. These individuals should take the extra precaution of frequently washing their hands, avoiding rubbing their eyes and wearing protective gloves.
Wear the Right Eye Protection
Anyone that works around potential hazards must wear the proper eye protection. Depending on the job, this can include safety glasses, goggles, helmets and/or face shields.
Prevent Digital Eye Strain
People who work in offices and around computers are also at risk of eye problems. Digital eye strain (also known as computer vision syndrome) is a result of staring at a computer screen for extended periods of time (typically more than two hours). Symptoms include dry eye, headaches, neck pain, red eyes and blurry vision. Individuals who work with computers can reduce digital eye strain symptoms by taking the following precautions:
- Blink often to moisturize the eyes.
- Take a break from looking at the computer screen every 20 minutes. Focus on an object that is at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
- Position the computer roughly 30 inches away from the face.
- Buy an anti-glare screen for the computer monitor.
To learn more about tips to protect the eyes, please contact Island Eye Surgicenter by calling (516) 877-2400.