March is Workplace Eye Wellness Month sponsored by Prevent Blindness. This month’s campaign is hoping to provide employers and employees with free information on all eye wellness topics ranging from eye strain to eye safety in industrial settings, in order to promote all around eye health at work and at home.
According to a report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 15,730 reported eye injuries that caused days away from work in 2020. Therefore, it is important for both employers and employees to spread awareness on the commonality of eye injury and how we can prevent these injuries in many situations. The most effective preventative measure is proper eye protection. The type of eye protection that should be used depends on the hazards in the workplace. For example, eye protection will differ for working areas that have particles, flying objects, or dust than working areas with hazardous radiation.
OSHA requires employers to equip their employees with the necessary safety equipment in their environment. Eye and face protection and training to use these materials must be provided to protect against chemical, environmental, radiological, or mechanical hazards. Furthermore, the CDC recommends eye protection for a variety of exposure settings where workers can acquire infectious disease through ocular exposure where employees can get infections introduced through mucous membranes of the eye known as the conjunctiva and causing conjunctivitis, bloodborne viruses, herpes, rhinoviruses, or other infections.
Other than physical debris and infections, eyes can also be damaged in an office setting. American workers can spend seven or more hours a day on the computer in the office or at home. Using digital screens for this extended period of time puts our eyes at risk of digital eye strain which includes soreness, irritation, blurred vision, or headaches.
Eye injury can take many forms and happen in many different settings. Thus, make your employees aware of proper eye protection and healthy habits to avoid eye injuries. To learn more about Eye Wellness Month visit: https://preventblindness.org/workplace-eye-health-2022/.
DII is your partner in workplace safety. Our team of experts can work with you to understand how to educate your employees and keep everyone’s eyes healthy in all types of hazardous environments. Please contact your DII representative for more information. #OSHA #PreventBlindness #EyeHealth