Nearly 25,000 Americans go to the emergency room every year due to an eye injury that happens in the workplace. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) hopes to reduce this number by raising awareness about eye protection and wellness in the workplace. They have designated March as Workplace Eye Wellness Month. This month, the team at Tayani Institute joins the AAO in reminding everyone to protect the eyesight we have been given. Here’s how:
Wear Appropriate Eye Protection
Most eye injuries that occur in the workplace happen because of a particle abrasion in the eye or chemical splashing. It is imperative for anyone that works around potential hazards to wear appropriate eye protection. This could include safety glasses, goggles, helmets or face shields. Wearing polycarbonate material will help protect and prevent eye injuries.
Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome
With more jobs revolving around computers, computer vision syndrome (i.e., digital eye strain) is a legitimate threat to the health and wellness of our eyes. Staring at the screen for prolonged periods of time can cause dry eye, headaches and neck pain.
One of the best ways to prevent computer-related eye problems is to take frequent rest breaks. Remember the 20-20-20 rule: at least every 20 minutes, take your eyes off your screen and focus on an object at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
Repositioning the computer screen roughly 30 inches away from the face (at eye level) and investing in an anti-glare screen for the monitor are helpful for preventing computer vision syndrome. Staying hydrated and using artificial tears can help lubricate the eyes and stave off dry eye symptoms.
Reduce the Risk of Eye Infection
Individuals in the healthcare, laboratory, janitorial and animal handling industries are at a heightened risk of picking up an eye infection. Those working in these industries should be especially careful about reducing their risk of exposure to eye illnesses, and should take the appropriate measures (i.e., wearing special protection, frequently washing hands).
Schedule Annual Eye Exams
Finally, annual eye exams are excellent opportunities for an ophthalmologist to examine the eyes and identify any sign of problems in their earliest stages. The eye doctor can also address any possible vision-related concerns or monitor changes in vision.