Let’s face it; most of us don’t even make it to the eye doctor for a regular vision check until we start having vision issues. For a lot of us, that’s usually between ages 35-40. As such, it should come as no surprise that in terms of eye protection, most of us aren’t using it when we need to.
If asked about the importance of eye protection and what kind to have, most of us find ourselves C students at best. Use it when you’re handling acid (which is probably never) or when you’re working in a laboratory (which, unless you’re a scientist, is also likely never).
Friends, the team at Stoggles knows the importance of eye protection, and we’ve got some interesting facts about safety glasses you need to know. We’ll talk about situations that call for safety glasses (hint: we aren’t even naming construction, chemicals, or lab work) and give you a few other tips about how to make sure the eye protection you pick is top-notch.
1. You Need Eye Protection More Often Than You Think
Safety glasses are only important for welders, construction workers, and surgeons. This untrue statement is why we find nearly 2.5 million people suffering from eye injuries each year. More than half of those 2.5 million eye injuries happen at home.
Eye protection is important anytime there’s a risk to your ocular health. The risk to your vision is practically lurking around every corner.
With nearly half of all eye injuries occurring at home, it’s clear that some of our at-home activities require eye protection. Yard work, cleaning with chemicals, or doing home improvement present unique opportunities for you to injure your eyes.
- Power tools, like saws, drills, and grinders, can all turn tiny objects into eye-sensing projectile missiles.
- Lawn equipment can send debris into your eyes. Even if you aren’t working with lawn equipment while in the yard, allergens and tree sap can cause blurry vision, bacterial infections, and even conjunctivitis.
- Cleaning. The products you use to clean your home are great for dissolving mold and grime but are murder on your sensitive eyes. To avoid losing your vision over a dirty toilet, safety glasses are an absolute must.
Once you begin to see the potential threats to your vision, it’s hard to unsee them. Grabbing a pair of safety glasses can even protect your eyes while you’re cooking. Honestly, who wants hot grease in their eyes?
When You’re On Your Phone
Yep. Even using your smartphone or tablet at home (or anywhere) can place your eyes at risk. These types of devices emit blue light, part of the spectrum of light that contains short wavelengths of high energy.
Blue light is also emitted from the sun, but the blue light we get from our devices presents a unique threat. We’re exposed to blue light more and more because of our increased use of technology.
On the Slopes
Skiing, snowboarding, surfing, and sailing are all activities that place your eyes at risk of UV damage in a really interesting way. Instead of being exposed to UV rays directly, your eyes get UV ray damage from rays that are reflected off the snow, sand, or water.
This type of damage can result in a condition called photokeratitis, a kind of “sunburn” of the eyes. This condition affects the cornea, causing redness, burning, irritation, swelling, and excessive tearing. It can be incredibly painful.
During Allergy Season
Seasonal allergies can leave you feeling miserable and can wreak havoc on your eyes. Allergies can attack your eyeballs in the form of pollen from ragweed or oak, but also as perennial problems like pet dander, pollution, or mold.
Wearing eye protection when you know you’ll be exposed to allergens can help keep your eyes calm and help you avoid the itching, watering, and irritation you’d normally experience.
2. Dirty Eyewear Isn’t Safe
Wearing eye protection is great, but if it’s dirty, it isn’t protecting you. In fact, it could actually be harming your eyes. Dirty eyewear can play host to pathogens, chemicals, and unsafe particles from prior activities and exposure.
Plus, if your specs are dirty, you won’t want to wear them. No one likes staring out a dirty window, and the same goes for eyewear. And safety glasses that aren’t on your face offer no protection, leaving you susceptible to injuries — like Wolverine without his regenerative healing abilities.
If you’re sharing eyewear, bacteria from someone else’s eyes and skin could be floating on the surface of the glasses. It’s critical to clean and sanitize your protective eyewear if you’re sharing it with someone else, but it’s also important even if you’re the only one using it.
As a side note, dirty eye protection can also present a risk to your eyes by requiring removal for cleaning while you’re wearing it. If you have to remove your eye protection to clean it while you’re wearing it, you place your eyes at risk of injury.
3. Anti-Fog Glasses Are a Must
While we’re on the subject of not removing your safety glasses, let’s talk about fogging. Glasses that fog are a major annoyance and safety issue. Foggy glasses prevent you from seeing the task at hand and also increase the chance of an eye injury.
When you remove your safety glasses to wipe away the fog, your eyes are left vulnerable to impact, spills, splatters, and debris. Anti-fog-coated glasses are the solution for keeping your eyes safe and your visibility sharp.
Unlike anti-fog wipes, which are effective but not long-lasting, anti-fog glasses offer a long-term solution by changing the way the condensation spreads across the surface of your lenses, keeping your glasses fog-free.
4. Not All Impact Resistance Is the Same
Sure, glasses that are labeled “impact resistant” seem like a good solution for protecting your eyes, but not all impact resistance meets the high standards required by the American National Standards Institute.
The ANSI Z87.1-2020 certification involves thorough testing to ensure the safety glasses that are available with their credentials are resistant to various forms of weighted and high-velocity impact. To pass the ANSI testing, both the lenses and frames of your glasses must not break or crack.
You can look for the ANSI Z87.1 seal on the body of your safety glasses, either on the frame or the lenses.
5. You Need Safety Glasses for Your Desk Job
Desk jockeys might think they don’t need safety glasses, but remember that pesky blue light issue? If you sit in front of a screen for eight hours a day, your eyes are exposed to blue light more than others who don’t work at a desk.
You’ve probably experienced discomfort from blue light before. Eyes that feel dry, tired, and strained are symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome, a condition caused by too much screen exposure.
Blue light can even interfere with your sleep. This is why it’s recommended that you avoid tablets, devices, and televisions before you attempt to go to sleep. By tricking your circadian rhythm into thinking it’s earlier in the evening than it actually is, it can become harder for your body to switch into sleep mode.
Wearing a pair of blue light blocking safety glasses can help protect your eyes from harmful blue light without disrupting the way you see. In other words, the blue light blocking filter doesn’t shade your vision the way sunglasses do.
6. They’re Available in a Prescription
People who wear corrective lenses often feel marginalized when it comes to safety glasses; who wants to stuff a massive pair of plastic glasses over your regular eyeglasses? The good news is, you don’t have to.
Stoggles safety glasses are available with your custom prescription lenses, so you can get the eye protection you need without the bulk or discomfort. We’re firm believers that an integral part of eye safety is being comfortable in the protective eyewear you choose.
7. They Won’t Make You Look Like a Mad Scientist
The truth is many of us avoid wearing safety glasses because they don’t exactly make us exude confidence. Why would they? Large, bulky, goggle-like protective eyewear is both unattractive and uncomfortable. Unfortunately, you still need to protect your eyes.
Stoggles to the rescue. Stoggles are available in a sleek, understated design that looks like your favorite specs and protects your eyes superbly. Available in two different lens shapes and numerous colors, it’s easy to customize your look.
Stoggles are also available in different sizes, so you can get the fit you want and make sure you not only look great, but you feel great too.
8. They’re UV Blocking
If you get the right pair, you can expect UV protection even without them being shaded. Stoggles safety glasses are made from super lightweight polycarbonate, a material that is naturally UV blocking.
9. The Side and Top Shields Are Important
If your beef with safety glasses centers around the “extra” material, let us convince you why it’s there and why you most definitely need it. The side and top shields protect your eyes in places your regular glasses leave vulnerable.
Regular glasses and sunglasses have gaps above the top frame of the glasses and on the sides of the frames near your temples. Particles, debris, spills, and projectiles can easily get into your eyes in these areas, but side and top shields found on safety glasses protect your eyes, preventing their interference.
10. They’re Convenient
Owning a pair of safety glasses is really convenient. It means doing projects, sports, and activities without an additional trip to the hardware store for a pair of dollar bin glasses, and it means your eyes stay safe with little effort.
Because 90% of all eye-related injuries are completely preventable simply by wearing protective eyewear, having a pair of your own is both convenient and smart.
Stoggles: The Solution for Eye Protection
Eye protection is essential, and you need it in more situations than you think. The options for protection can leave you feeling a little underwhelmed, which is why Stoggles safety glasses are the perfect solution for the discriminating eye protection connoisseur. (Or, you know, just someone who wants to avoid the whole high school chemistry lab look).
Eye Protection and Safer Practices FAQ | NSTA
ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020: Current Standard for Safety Glasses | ANSI