When Should Eye Protection Be Worn?

Stumbling upon this article means you’ve got eye protection in your crosshairs, and that’s a good thing. Most of us don’t protect our eyes as frequently as we need to. While it’s true that wearing sunglasses is a form of eye protection, you probably aren’t aware of the risks to your vision that are hiding at work, home, and even when you’re at play. 

Lucky for you, Stoggles does know the risks. We also know a lot about how the eye works and why vision protection is so important. Together, we’ll talk about these issues and give you the key to determining when you need eye protection and what type of eye protection to use. 

The Eyes: Why Protection is So Important

Your eyes are fascinating structures that are responsible for what is arguably the most important of your five senses. Your vision protects you and helps you to enjoy life. When your other senses fail, your vision can pick up the tab, seeing flames if you can’t smell smoke or noticing the mold on a vegetable so that you don’t take a bite.

Regrettably, the eyes are also extremely fragile. The eyes host some of the only cells in the body that don’t regenerate. Your retinal cells don’t repair themselves, so if they are damaged, your vision is damaged. Most of the time, vision damage to retinal cells is not reversible. 

It’s essential to care for your eyes properly so that you can ensure your vision lasts as long as you do. 

What Is Eye Protection?

Protecting your eyes is more than just donning sunglasses or your regular specs when you think you might be in the vicinity of flying debris. Safety glasses and goggles protect your eyes with 360-degree protection, so no matter what you’re doing, your eyes are always safe. 

Safety glasses are unique from other glasses because of several key features, like:

Side and Top Shields. 

Regular glasses leave massive gaps between your face and the lenses of your glasses, at your eyebrows and on both sides of your head, by your temples. These spaces allow debris, particles, and droplets to enter your eye area and cause an injury. 

Side and top shields on safety glasses are constructed to keep these particles out and your eyes safe. Unlike some safety glasses, Stoggles uses a streamlined design to keep our side and top shields understated and comfortable while maintaining ultimate protection.

Impact Resistance

The risk of injury to your eyes via impact from a flying object is real, whether you’re mowing the lawn or working in a welding shop. Impact resistance is vital in safety glasses because anything that strikes your glasses has the potential to break and/or shatter them, creating an even worse eye injury. 

The American National Standards Institute gives guidelines for the testing of safety glasses to ensure they meet both weight and velocity impact tests. Glasses marked with the ANSI Z87.1-2020 seal can protect your eyes from heavy objects that strike your glasses at various speeds without breaking or cracking.

UV Blocking

An often overlooked aspect of eye safety is UV protection, but you should be wearing UV protective glasses more than just in the car or at the beach. UV blocking glasses help reduce glare and keep your eyes safe from harmful UV rays. 

UV rays can have a devastating effect on your vision and can increase your risk of developing certain age-related eye conditions earlier. Not to mention, it’s entirely possible for you to get a sunburn on your cornea. Sunburns in your eye are more painful than the kind you get on your skin, take longer to heal, and can be miserable until they do. 

UV blocking glasses can protect you from rays even without providing shade. All clear Stoggles are made from polycarbonate material which is crystal clear and naturally UV blocking.

Blue Light Blocking

While we’re on the topic of dangerous light, let’s talk blue light. Blue light is similar to ultraviolet light. Blue light rays are high-energy, short-wavelength rays of light that have the ability to penetrate your eye and reach your retina. 

Despite what some may guess, blue light isn’t new. The largest source of blue light is the sun. The real issue with blue light is our increased exposure to it. The risk to your eyes increases as your blue light exposure increases. 

Blue light is also emitted from devices like computers, tablets, smartphones, and LED televisions. It’s easy to see why our exposure to blue light is on a virtually straight climb. Blue light exposure can lead to Computer Vision Syndrome, which can cause eye strain, fatigue, and even headaches. 

Researchers aren’t yet sure what kind of long-term effects blue light might have on our vision. Protecting your eyes from blue light is the smart way to ensure your eyes are safe, even when you’re at your desk.

Anti-Fog

Anti-fog coating is a must-have for eye protection. Safety glasses that fog are dangerous for multiple reasons. 

First, they take you off task. If you’re working with a soldering tool, removing your glasses to wipe them could cause you to burn yourself or someone else because you’re no longer focused on what you’re doing. 

Secondly, they place your eyes at risk. Glasses that need removal leave your eyes vulnerable to injury because they’re unprotected.

Comfort

One of the most important (and sometimes overlooked) features of safety glasses is comfort. If you have safety glasses that aren’t comfortable, you’ll find them impossible to wear. Safety glasses that sit on your workbench or get stuffed inside a junk drawer don’t protect anything. 

Comfort is key when shopping for eye protection. It’s why Stoggles creates our safety glasses from super lightweight polycarbonate and offers three different fits. 

When Do You Need Eye Protection?

Short answer: more often than you think. If we could convince you to wear safety glasses continually, we would. Truth be told, we think our Stoggles are so comfortable (and stylish) you’ll likely end up wearing them more often than your standard specs or sunnies. 

Regardless, eye protection is crucial for certain tasks at home, work, and play. 

At Work

Nearly 80,000 eye injuries happen on the job each year. Of those jobs, many require hospital visits, and about 36,000 require time off from work. 

The jobs that are riskiest to your eyes are construction, manufacturing, automotive repair, healthcare, and even office work. While the first three are self-explanatory and involve power tools and the potential for debris, the last two may not be so easy to understand. 

Healthcare workers, specifically, need eye protection to keep them safe from bodily fluids, splashes, spills, and droplets. Additionally, eye protection offers safety against combative patients (and may the occasional combative coworker). 

For office workers, the risk is blue light. Because blue light can reach the retina, there’s a question as to whether or not it can impact macular degeneration, a condition that robs you of your vision. Blue light blocking safety glasses can filter blue light away from your eyes, keeping them safe while you work.

At Home

There are over 2.5 million eye injuries each year worldwide. It’s easy to assume most of those happen in high-risk jobs, but 52% of all eye injuries actually occur at home.

  • Yard work. Mowing, trimming, edging, and even planting flowers are activities that present risks to your eyes. Obviously, there’s a risk of flying debris, but there’s also a risk of sap and pollen from plants entering your eye area and irritating your eyes. 

Wearing safety glasses can prevent your eyes from coming in direct contact with allergens and bacteria that could cause infections. 

  • Cleaning. Cleaning chemicals that splash in your eyes can cause vision loss. Wearing safety glasses while you use certain chemicals and solvents is the smart way to clean your home without risking your vision. 
  • Home improvement. Anytime you are working with saws, drills, hammers, or other tools, there’s a potential for debris to get caught in your eyes. Wearing safety glasses makes home improvement safe (at least for your eyes). 

It’s harder to see the risk to your vision when you’re at home, likely because we are most comfortable in our homes and assume the best possible outcome when we engage in an activity.

Sports and Hobbies

Safety glasses can protect your vision when you’re enjoying your favorite pastimes. From racquetball to skiing, protecting your eyes from the elements and from the tools of your favorite sport are important. 

Sports involving balls traveling at high speeds require safety glasses to ensure you don’t have an ocular concussion. ANSI Z87.1-2020 impact certification (which is standard on every pair of Stoggles) keeps you safe while you play. 

Hobbies that take you outdoors present another eye risk: UV damage. Sports that take place on the snow, ice, sand, and water are unique in that they can damage your eyes with light rays reflected off their surfaces. This results in a condition called photokeratitis, which can cause pain, swelling, excessive tearing, and a feeling like there is sand or dirt in your eyes. 

Finding Eye Protection You Like

You know the reasons why you need eye protection, and you know when to wear it, but how do you find a pair of safety glasses that don’t look so…safety glasses-ish?

The solution is Stoggles. Stoggles covers all the safety features, ensuring your eyes are supremely protected, and delivers next-level style and comfort. 

Fit

The Stoggles difference is that we don’t offer a one-size-fits-all approach to our glasses. We offer numerous different fits and styles so you can get a customized fit for your safety glasses, similar to the customized fit you enjoy for your prescription lenses. 

As an aside, if prescription lenses are something you need, we do that, too. In fact, we handle prescriptions in-house, saving you time and money. 

Comfort

Our streamlined design and lightweight polycarbonate material ensure your ultimate comfort while wearing our glasses. They’re so light; we bet you’ll forget you have them on your face. 

Style

Call us biased, but there’s just no comparison to Stoggles style. Our glasses are available in two different lens shapes and a myriad of colors so that you can pick a pair that is perfectly “you.” Our safety glasses don’t look like other safety glasses, and we like it that way. We consider ourselves more “stylish PPE” than “mad scientist.”

Eye Protection for Every Day

Your eyes are precious, and they’re met with risks every single day. Play it safe. Always carry eye protection with you, and wear it as frequently as possible. Trust Stoggles to keep you safe and stylish, no matter where you are or what you’re doing. 

 

Sources:

800,000 Eye Injuries Occur Annually, 90% are Preventable | EHS Today

Protect Your Vision on the Job | Prevent Blindness

When It Comes to Eye Injuries, the Men's Eyes Have It | American Academy of Ophthalmology

Photokeratitis: Treatment, Healing Time, Causes, Symptoms & Prevention | Cleveland Clinic

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