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Common workplace eye injuries and how to prevent them

On Behalf of | Jan 25, 2022 | Personal injury, Workers' Compensation

Some employees in Illinois face certain challenges in keeping safe. Depending on the type of work performed, eye injuries can occur. It’s important to know about them and how to prevent them from happening.

How can eye injuries occur at work?

Eye injuries suffered on the job are more common than many realize. People who work with chemicals, substances and foreign objects that can potentially enter their eyes need to take precautions to protect their eyes. Unfortunately, many workers don’t take the right precautions to do just that. A worker can accidentally scratch their cornea or suffer blindness when a spark of fire or toxic chemical enters their eye. Even radiation exposure can lead to a serious eye injury.

Health care workers are also at risk of contracting illnesses when their eyes are exposed. For example, those who work with patients who have infectious diseases that can be spread through contact with the eyes can get sick or develop an eye injury.

An employee who works using a computer all day is also at risk of suffering eye injuries. Using a bright screen all day can result in significant eye strain that can damage the person’s vision over time.

What jobs carry a higher risk of eye injuries?

Certain types of jobs carry a higher risk of eye injuries. They include the following:

  • Auto repair work
  • Electrical work
  • Welding
  • Laboratory work
  • Medical professions
  • Construction
  • Manufacturing

How can workers protect their eyes?

Any type of work that involves the possible risk of something getting into a person’s eyes is dangerous to eye safety. It’s important to know how to properly protect the eyes to prevent a potential injury. Wearing one’s own regular prescription glasses alone is usually not enough. Safety goggles or glasses, face shields or helmets can help to shield the eyes from dangerous substances, chemicals or objects that might suddenly fly into the eyes and cause injury or contamination.

Workers who wear prescription glasses or contact lenses should have additional eye safety gear to protect their eyes. Some safety glasses or goggles are even available with prescriptions to help people with vision issues see better while working.