Whether you’re toiling away in the bright light of the sun or find yourself in front of a computer screen for the better part of your workday, your eyes can be negatively affected and such factors can ultimately compromise both your short- and long-term vision. With March being Workplace Eye Wellness Month, the professionals at Nevada Eye Physicians in Las Vegas, Mesquite, Henderson, Pahrump, and Boulder City, NV want you to learn about eye protection at work, and how you can safely guard your vision from accidental sight damage in the workplace.
Did you know that according to the American Safety & Health Institute, more than 2,000 workers injure the eyes at work every day? It’s true, and they’re not all related to the high-risk jobs you would assume are the most vulnerable or prone to accidental mishaps.
Common eye injuries in the workplace
- Indirect Contact – While unexpected contact can certainly happen in any industry, workers involved in more physically laboring activities in potentially dangerous environments are more susceptible to daily accidents or long-term ailments. Scratched corneas can happen anywhere, but those exposed to the dusty atmospheres of mills and mines are more likely to experience increasing irritations due to dust, small substance slivers, and seemingly unseen debris from cement or wood.
- Blunt Force – The same holds true for more obviously dangerous workplaces. Those who work in industries such as construction, welding, and manufacturing must take even more safety precautions with their eyes as facial mishaps and direct striking of your eyes is more likely to occur even if it’s when you might expect it the most.
- Chemical Intrusion – Believe it or not, work-related eye injuries don’t only happen outdoors. In fact, one of the most intrusive enemies of the eye is exposure to harmful chemicals in confined or poorly ventilated areas. While industrial-strength chemicals may come with giant precautionary directions, many common cleaning supplies do not. A burning sensation in your eyes may be a common result of an intense workday, but it doesn’t always come from direct heat.
- Screen Overexposure – Staring at a computer screen all day can negatively affect your eyesight. Recent studies show that prolonged screen time can not only cause frequent headaches and dry your eyes out, but can also contribute to long-term vision degeneration and even lasting, nagging strains and pains in your back or neck.
Top five ways to prevent eye injuries in the workplace
- Basic Eye Protection – The most common of all eye safety procedures in the workplace, simple precautionary measures should always be taken depending on the level of potentially hazardous accidents that could happen while working. From required safety goggles and protective headgear to easily accessible eye-wash stations when an employee might be exposed to harmful chemicals, sometimes it’s not only best practice to have convenient eye-wash stations – but also the law.
- Frequent Breaks – Whether you’re practicing the 20/20/20 technique to give your eyes a rest from glowing screens or just need a little rest to adjust your focus, breaks should never be considered just a reward for hard work. They can be a necessity when practicing smart safety measures, and your vision will always be better for them in the short and long term.
- Refreshing Walks – If you work in a confined or stuffy area with poor ventilation, a brisk walk in the open air can do wonders for your vision. Also, many work environments can have polluted particles floating around, and it is important to keep yourself both hydrated and seeing clear to help ensure everyone’s safety. Eye drops are another great remedy to always have on hand for any unexpected irritations.
- Proper Safety Training – Oftentimes, a proactive education is the best form of eye injury prevention. Teaching employees the possible hazards while on the job and how to properly deal with accidents creates an overall safer environment.
- Annual Exams – Sometimes even the most minor eye injuries can quickly turn into a major, long-term problem. Keeping your regular eye appointments with the professionals at Nevada Eye Physicians will help you detect any potential problems with your vision, and teach you about the ways to take care of your eyes at work. Should you have any concerns about your sight during Workplace Eye Wellness Month or beyond, consult with your eye doctor at Nevada Eye Physicians in Las Vegas, Mesquite, Henderson, Pahrump, or Boulder City, NV – today.