The Different Types of Eye Protection

Eye protection is protective equipment for the eyes, typically designed to minimize the possibility of serious eye injury, and occasionally face. Such hazards requiring eye protection are: impact from debris or particles, light or dust, wind blast, glare from any kind of ball or puck utilized in sports, or heat. Eye protection includes a facemask, lens case, goggles, eye shield insert. When shopping for eye protection it is important to choose the right type, fit and design. Here are some general guidelines to follow in choosing eye protection:

eye protection


Hazard from particles and debris. When objects which are propelled at high speeds come into contact with the eye, either by brushing against the eye or touching the surface of the eye, or even when they are struck by a hard object, a potentially serious eye injury may occur. This is one of the most common types of eye injury, resulting from a fall, sports injury or other workplace hazards. One should wear protective eye protection when handling such hazardous objects, such as sharp objects, broken glass, toys, etc.


Hazard from light. This type of hazard is generally seen in the workplace, but can also occur when outdoor lighting is inadequate, especially with the advent of low-voltage lighting systems. In this situation, there is an increased risk for eye injury when reading or working at night. In order to reduce this hazard, the wearer should wear protective glasses or use eye protection, even when working at night. The type use of eye protection will vary depending on the hazard. For example, safety glasses will be more effective when used for work than when used for play.


Hazard from dust. This is one of the most common eye injuries caused by various types of dust particles. When dust particles are inhaled, they can enter the lungs and become lodged in the alveoli. This causes damage to the airways, which increases the risk for obstruction and inflammation. To prevent such hazards from happening, it is important for workers to wear suitable eyewear, such as safety glasses or corrective eyewear, when exposed to dust.

Hazard from splash. Working in the kitchen or any other environment where pots and pans are exposed to hot oils, water or other liquids can expose employees to a risk from splash. Different types of liquids can create different types of hazards, including those that create redness and inflammation around the eyes. As a result, eye protection will either need to be worn to protect the eyes or it will need to be used with other safety equipment, such as goggles or laser protection eyewear. Some types of goggles or laser safety eyewear will provide better protection than eyewear designed for protection from splash.


Prescription safety glasses. These eye protection products are prescribed by doctors for specific situations, depending on how much damage has been done to the eye. For example, if the damage is severe enough, eye protection may need to be worn to protect the cornea. However, there are different types of eyewear meant to be worn on different jobs. In general, prescription safety glasses are available only for high-risk jobs, such as those that involve operating hazardous machines, working with chemicals or cleaning hazardous materials.

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