Ok, now that I have your attention, March is Workplace Eye Wellness month. That means it’s time to talk about protecting your vision for a lifetime. The days of using unsightly fashion and discomfort as an excuse for not wearing safety glasses in the workplace are long gone. Today’s safety glasses have come a long way. Many now come in trendy designs and in varying materials to ensure there is a comfortable fit for everyone.
Consider the following statistics:
- According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology there are 20,000 eye injuries in the workplace each year.
- The estimated cost of workplace eye injuries in lost productivity, medical treatments and worker’s compensation payments amounts to $300 million and up.
- Some statistics estimate as many as 1,000 workplace eye injuries daily! That’s an awful lot of eyeballs!
- Recent studies show that approximately 90% of all workplace eye injuries are completely avoidable if the proper eye protection is worn. Think about that… 90% of those people who have experienced eye injuries, some with very serious vision threatening injuries, would have clear, unobstructed vision had they worn safety glasses.
So who needs to wear eye protection in the workplace? Anyone that is around:
- Flying objects – think metal shavings, wood fragments, glass, ropes, chains
- Heavy machinery and manufacturing – where small airborne particles and dusty conditions exist
- Bodily fluids – medical professionals working near traumatic injuries or any potential for fluids to spurt
- Construction – anyone in the construction industry including plumbers, carpenters, drywallers, etc.
While you may think that your workplace situation doesn’t warrant protective eyewear, if there is any possibility for injury, play it safe. It beats the alternative. While you may still think that safety glasses are not fashionable, I’m sure you will agree that safety glasses make a much bigger fashion statement than losing an eye!
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issues guidelines and requirements for most industries and workplace situations. They are the “workplace enforcers” and do, on occasion, make unannounced visits to workplaces to ensure these guidelines and regulations are being met. They will also make recommendations for the best safety eyewear depending on the type of hazard that exists. It’s in everyone’s best interest (both you and your employer) to follow these guidelines and protect your vision. These are the only eyes you will ever have. They are the window to your soul. Treat them with the utmost of care!
Protect yourself today!
If you need any suggestions or recommendations for safety glasses, contact an eye care professional. Please go to AAO.org, PreventBlindness.org and SafetyGlassesUSA.com for more information,
Computers and workplace eye strain!