Employers can be advocates for workplace eye wellness: four winning strategies

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Proper management of employee health and wellness is an important facet to consider when striving for success in the workplace. Properly supporting employee health helps them perform better, encourages productivity, prevents losses from absences, enhances job satisfaction, and improves overall morale. Employers can promote employee wellness in different ways, but one area you should consider prioritising is eye care in the workplace.

The Association of Optometrists finds that focusing on eye health at work enhances worker safety, significantly increases productivity, and reduces the rate of early retirement. Benefits aren’t limited to employees, either. Advocating workplace eye health can also help employers gain better business and retention within the workplace. Given the importance of workplace eye wellness, here are a few winning strategies you can implement to help support your employees.

Enhance office lighting

Good lighting in the workplace is essential, as it can impact employees’ physical and mental well-being. According to office workspace design company Oktra, incorporating a lot of natural light into a space can reduce eye strain, headaches, and one’s risk of developing blurred vision. If natural light is hard to come by, you can opt for healthy artificial lighting using LED lights, as these closely mimic the quality of sunlight.

When opting for LED lights, consider going for cooler temperature lighting (5000-6500 Kelvin) for tasks requiring focus and concentration, as this can keep employees alert and productive. Meanwhile, warmer temperature lighting (2700-3500 Kelvin) is a great option for encouraging a more relaxed ambiance in collaborative spaces and rest areas.

 

Provide proper eyewear

Using the proper protective eyewear at work is vital for shielding against hazards like projectiles, chemicals, bodily fluids, and other potentially harmful substances that could harm one’s vision. Case in point, safety goggles for construction workers and face shields for medical professionals are a staple accessory in their line of work. Similarly, office workers also need protective eyewear for their daily tasks, which is why they should buy blue light glasses. These are designed to protect the eyes against High Energy Visible blue light emitted by digital screens, which most office workers are exposed to due to the nature of their job.

Your employees can try glasses with BlueReflect lenses to benefit from multi-layer anti-reflection coatings. These reduce glare and lessen the risk of digital eye strain, leading to better visual comfort and enhanced clarity. Meanwhile, those who accomplish colour-sensitive tasks can opt for blue light glasses with KODAK UV Bluelens for enhanced colour recognition. People who need vision correction can also add blue light filters to existing prescription glasses. Employees can buy this eyewear at optical shops, and employers can introduce a reimbursement scheme to encourage employees to get them for daily use.

Observe good ergonomics

Ergonomics generally refers to the science of designing a space or accessory to optimise safety, productivity, and comfort by reducing physical strain. As such, good workspace ergonomics is also important in supporting eye wellness, as it can reduce the risk of discomfort, headaches, and blurred vision. Maintaining proper ergonomics also gives employees better focus and improved engagement with their work while supporting their overall well-being.

With this, it’s important that employers purchase ergonomic accessories that their employees can use while at the office. Some of the best accessories that can support eye health include height-adjustable tables, pivotal screen monitors, and chairs with weight-activated mechanisms in seats. These pieces make it easier to maintain a comfortable posture and proper eye distance from screens that prevents eye strain and fatigue. If you wish to upgrade office workstations with more ergonomic furniture, educate employees on how best to use them to ensure minimal eye strain and improved vision in the workplace.

Encourage eye exercises

In addition to having protective eyewear and good workspace ergonomics, you can also advocate for workplace eye wellness by encouraging eye exercises among employees. These involve movements and techniques that aim to condition the eye muscles to reduce symptoms of strain, fatigue, and dryness.

One of the most popular eye exercises is the 20-20-20 rule, which our post highlights as a great way to combat the effects of screen fatigue and prevent irritation. Employees only need to look away from their screen every 20 minutes for 20 seconds, and focus their eyes on an object 20 feet away to help periodically rest the eyes throughout the work day.