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Could Your Job Put Your Vision In Danger?

According to the Harris PM. Bureau of Labor Statistics more than 65,000 work-related eye injuries and illnesses cause job absenteeism in the United States every year.

Workers who have the highest risk of eye injuries include fabricators, laborers, equipment operators, repair workers, production and precision workers and professionals who are exposed to computers for an extended period of time.

Among the eye injuries that occur in the workplace the most common occurrences include;

  • Corneal Abrasions
  • Foreign Bodies
  • Blunt Trauma
  • Chemical Burn
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Eye diseases associated with ultraviolet radiation exposure
  • Computer related injuries

Although these injuries can occur at any time, they are occur most frequently in working environments. Of the large number of eye injuries that occur in the workplace 90% of these could have been prevented.

Work Related Eye Injuries Explained

Corneal Abrasions

Eye pain after a trauma caused by a foreign body, rubbing, or a scratch suggests a corneal abrasion. Associated symptoms may include blinking, tearing, pain with eye movement, headache, blurry vision, and foreign body sensation.

Foreign Bodies

Foreign bodies are common with corneal abrasions. After instilling topical anesthesia, remove superficial foreign bodies using a cotton-tipped swab soaked in saline. Remove minor irritants by irrigating the eye with eyewash solution.

Blunt Trauma

Bleeding into the anterior chamber of the eye (hyphema), retina, or vitreous may suggest blunt trauma. Retinal detachment may present as a dark curtain covering part of the visual field.

Chemical Burn

Ocular chemical burns make up a significant percentage of work-related eye injuries and require rapid treatment.

Conjunctivitis

Allergic conjunctivitis is characterized by red, itchy eyes; serous or ropy secretions; bulbar conjunctiva swelling; and red, hypertrophic papillae under the upper eyelid. Workers may be unaware that a work-related allergen is causing recurrent conjunctival symptoms, often including rhinitis and asthma.

Eye Diseases Associated With Ultraviolet Radiation Exposure

Outdoor workers exposed to significant ultraviolet rays need sun protection and safety counseling to prevent age-related macular degeneration.

Computer Related Injuries

Using a computer for extended periods of time is associated with a range of temporary eye disorders including pain and altered vision and eye strain caused by computer glare.

Contact Lens Injury

Contact lens injury usually occurs due to negligence or the belief that contact lenses may be enough protection from things such as UVRays, foreign substances or exposure to chemicals. Safety equipment should always be worn whether the individual wears contact lenses or not.

How You Can Prevent It

Wearing protective eyewear

Ninety percent of work-related eye injuries are preventable with adequate eye protection therefore you should always ensure you are equipped with the correct safety gear.

Addressing the issue immediately

If your eyes become irritated or experience pain you must be quick in your attempt to address the issue. If you suspect chemical substances or a foreign substance may be irritating your eyes, wash them out immediately or see your physician. By addressing the issue immediately you significantly reduce the risk of further damage.

Contact Lenses do not protect you

Contact lenses do not provide eye protection, and physicians should be familiar with guidelines for the use of contacts in the workplace. Always ensure you are wearing the appropriate safety equipment needed as contact lenses will not protect you from chemicals, foreign substances or computer related injuries.

Prevent Computer Related Eyestrain

You can avoid computer related eyestrain by using correct lighting, reducing glare from windows, adjusting the brightness and contrast of your computer, adjusting the text on your screen, blinking more often, exercising your eyes and taking frequent breaks.

Your eyes are precious

You only have one set of eyes and with all of the risks out there it comes back to individuals to ensure they are doing the best they can to protect their most precious assets. Workplaces are now required to place safety requirements where eye related injuries are most common, however the risk is too great to leave it completely up to your employer.

Whether it be safety glasses, sunglasses, eye patches or cleaners eyecessories.com.au stocks a large range of visual health and fashion aids for your eye accessories needs. Prevention is the best cure and when it comes to your eyes you should take no chances.

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