If you use a computer at work, you probably already know that a long day of staring at your screen can lead to eye strain, tired eyes, headache, muscle aches and other symptoms of computer vision syndrome (CVS). But you may not know that CVS also can cause work mistakes and lost productivity.
And if you own a company, you might be interested to know that studies suggest you can increase profits by providing your employees vision care benefits and computer glasses to help boost productivity, decrease errors and reduce worker disability claims.
According to the American Optometric Association (AOA), the most frequent health complaints among computer workers are vision-related. Studies indicate that 50 to 90 percent of computer users suffer from visual symptoms of computer vision syndrome. These symptoms include eye strain, dry eyes, eye irritation, blurred vision and double vision.
With more and more of us using a computer at work, CVS is becoming a major public health issue. The AOA reports that a survey of optometrists found that approximately 10 million eye exams are performed annually in the United States due to vision problems related to computer use.
Should employers provide computer eyewear to workers? Studies suggest that increased productivity more than justifies the cost.
A study conducted by the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Optometry examined the relationship between the vision of computer workers and their productivity in the workplace.
This study found:
"Our data strongly suggest that improving the visual status of workers using computers results in greater productivity in the workplace, as well as improved visual comfort," said Kent Daum, OD, PhD, the study's chief investigator.
According to the UAB study, the economic benefit to employers of providing computer eyewear to their employees can be determined by measuring the average gain in productivity for computer workers over a one-year period, and dividing this productivity gain by the costs associated with the eyewear.
And if productivity is improved 10 percent, the cost savings more than double.
The UAB study also suggests computer vision benefit programs can add significant economic benefits to companies with large numbers of computer-using employees. Study results show that:
"Our study confirms that investing in optimal computer eyewear for employees results in a significant cost-benefit ratio," Daum said.
Article sourced from All About Vision