Eye Protection in the Workplace
The majority of eye injuries at work could be prevented with eye protection and a focus on eye safety. Sadly, far too many Delaware workers suffer avoidable injuries requiring cornea treatments, emergency operations and other procedures. During Workplace Eye Wellness Month this March, the American Academy of Ophthalmology reminds employers and workers about the importance of wearing eye protection.
Is Your Workplace Focused on Eye Care?
Before you think that this topic does not apply to you, think again. Each day, over 2,000 Americans suffer an eye injury. This means that almost one million Americans have experienced some vision loss due to eye injury, which has resulted in more than $300 million in lost work time, medical expenses and workman’s compensation.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Workplace Eye Injuries?
- Flying Debris – This could include large objects like nails, glass or specks of dust and metal.
- Chemicals – Burns to the eye can be caused by chemical spills and cleaning product mishaps.
- Harmful Radiation – Radiation exposure may cause corneal issues and decreased tear production.
- Puncture Injuries – Faulty or mishandled machinery can lead to punctures from wood and metal.
Most injuries occur when eye protection is worn but is ill-fitting – and when eye protection is not worn at all. Luckily, you can avoid a workplace eye injury with the use of proper safety eyewear.
PPE – A Term We’ve All Become Familiar With
Eye protection for work can vary depending on your occupation. For example, protective eyewear is enough in some cases, while side coverage may be required for others. And, sealed eye protection may be recommended for those who work in areas with caustic vapors or airborne particles. Here are some examples of eye protection that prevent serious injury.
- Goggles – Appropriate for work involving chemicals.
- Safety Glasses – Glasses with side protection shield against flying debris.
- Face Shield, Visor or Helmet – Dealing with radiation or hazardous materials requires special-purpose eye protection.
And it’s not enough to simply provide eye protection for workers. Safety equipment must be cleaned and maintained, fit for each individual task, comfortable to wear for the duration of a task – and made with a safe and durable design.
Some Additional Eye Care Considerations
Along with a lack of eye protection, workers can experience injuries or eye degeneration that could have been prevented. Poorly lit workspaces and excessive screen time without breaks will strain the eyes and gradually cause issues. Also, working without adequate training or rushing to meet deadlines can cause preventable injuries. Ultimately, with the potential risks of cornea injuries, ocular surface disease and other serious issues, proper eye care should be a priority for employers and workers across the country.
Effective Eye Treatments for Delaware Residents
If you have suffered an eye injury, it is important to seek treatment from an experienced doctor. At Eye Care of Delaware, we can help with cornea treatments, cataract surgery and a range of other solutions. To make an appointment, call (302) 454-8800 or contact us online.