Five Reasons to Use Prescription Safety Glasses Instead of Contacts
If you wear prescription glasses and dislike wearing them underneath standard safety glasses, that’s certainly understandable. The arrangement is clumsy, uncomfortable, and restricts your visual field. You have a double set of lenses which doubles the amount of cleaning required.
Perhaps you may be considering eye contacts beneath your safety glasses as an alternative. However, this makes your life more complicated because of the hygienic practices required of all contact users in order to avoid eye injuries and infections. Other requirements include not sleeping with them on and limiting their use to 8 or 9 consecutive hours.
Eye contact users willingly adhere to these requirements because the “glasses-free” look is important to them. However, there are also safety reasons for avoiding eye contacts in some work situations, even when wearing safety glasses over them. A simpler and safer alternative is getting prescription safety glasses. Regular contact users should consider this as well. Here are five of these safety issues:
Your Eyes Are More Vulnerable to Dust and Abrasive Particles
In addition to keeping the corneal surface moist, tears serve to wash foreign particles and dust from the eyes. Hard contact lenses interfere with this important function because they can trap dust and other particles against the cornea of the eye. The contact floats on a film of tear fluid. This allows small movements of the contact, which abrade trapped foreign particles against the cornea. This abrasion injures the eye in the form of scratches, which allow disease-causing pathogens to enter.
In addition to abrasion, chemical burns are possible with some types of particles such as cement dust. While this problem also affects people without contacts, they are less vulnerable because their tears can wash the particles out of the eyes.
Recovery from Contact Dislodgement Is More Difficult
If your contacts are dislodged, repositioning them is difficult if not impossible in many working environments, and may require standing in front of a restroom mirror. Your hands and fingers may be covered with dirt or grease, which also prevents on-the-spot repositioning. This is especially dangerous when safety demands clear vision. On the other hand, prescription safety glasses are quickly readjusted regardless of the cleanliness of your hands.
Recovery from Chemical Splash Is More Difficult
Chemicals from a splash to the eyes can become trapped behind contacts against the eye. Washing the chemical from the eyes requires contact removal. This delays removal of the chemical and increases the injury’s severity. The same is true of chemical powders that get into the eyes. This danger also exists with certain types of chemical fumes and vapors.
Contacts Limit Your Work Hours
Wearing your contacts beyond eight hours is ill-advised because the eyes require a recovery period. Working longer shifts with contacts can cause corneal neovascularization. This occurs when blood vessels grow over the cornea in an attempt to supply it with oxygen, which is normally supplied by your tears. The lack of oxygen also causes scarring, which increases the risk of infections and corneal ulcers.
Contacts Dry out Your Eyes
Finally, contacts accelerate drying of the eye in hot and dry working conditions. This problem worsens when your eyes are exposed to significant infrared radiation such as when working at foundries or when glass working.
If you aren’t wearing contacts currently, there’s no need to deal with the complexities covered above. It’s immensely simpler and safer to go with prescription safety glasses.
If you normally wear contacts, the above considerations also apply to you. One argument to think about is that you have to give your eyes a rest from contact use every day. Why not do this at work by wearing prescription safety glasses? Your eyes are covered by safety glasses in any case, which negate the glasses-free look. Prescription safety glasses allow you to wear your contacts when socializing after work. If you have any questions about this, please contact us.