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March Is Workplace Eye Wellness Month

According to data, almost 2,000 US workers sustain job-related eye injuries that require immediate medical treatment every single day. In fact, it is estimated that one million Americans have lost some degree of sight due to eye injuries. As a result, Prevent Blindness has declared March as Workplace Eye Wellness Month. Their goal is to raise awareness and provide employees and employers alike with information on how to prevent injuries on the job. 

Causes of Workplace Eye Injuries

Some of the most common causes of workplace eye injuries include flying debris, like tools or pieces of glass, as well as chemicals, and eye strain. It’s important to note that injuries usually occur when eye protection is not properly worn or isn’t worn at all. 

How to Prevent Workplace Eye Injuries

Fortunately, almost all workplace-related eye injuries can be prevented through the use of proper safety eyewear. As a matter of fact, employers have the responsibility to provide their employees with the necessary means to protect themselves against environmental, chemical, mechanical, and radiological hazards. Some common safety eyewear includes:

  • Goggles
  • Welding helmets
  • Full-face respirators
  • Face shields
  • Prescription safety glasses

What About Office Environments?

Office environments can also have a negative impact on an employee’s eye health. To put it simply, excessive tablet, computer, and smartphone use increases the risk of digital eye strain. Some common symptoms of digital eye strain include burning, tired, itchy eyes, dry eyes, headaches, and blurred vision. In order to reduce the negative effects, specialists recommend that you:

  • Place your screen at least 20 inches away from your eyes and a few inches below eye level.
  • Get an adjustable chair.
  • Choose a screen that can tilt and swivel, and a keyboard that you can adjust.
  • Change your lighting to reduce glare and harsh reflections. You can also place glare filters over your digital screens. 
  • Wear anti-reflective lenses to reduce glare and block the blue light that digital devices emit.
  • Yellow-tinted lenses can help ease digital eye strain by increasing contrast.
  • Take constant breaks by using the famous 20-20-20 rule. In other words, every 20 minutes, look away from your screen at an object that’s 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. That way, you allow your eyes to rest and reduce the chance of eye strain. 

How to Protect Your Vision

All in all, the best way to protect your eyes and make sure that you avoid vision-threatening diseases is to visit your eye doctor regularly. They will be able to inspect your eyes with the help of a comprehensive eye exam and find any underlying problems that might affect you in the future. And remember that the earlier your doctor discovers any eye disease, the more chances you have to prevent vision loss.

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