IS OFFICE LIGHTING AFFECTING YOUR VISION?

Do your eyes hurt, burn or itch after a day at work? Poor lighting may be to blame for your symptoms. Many companies use inexpensive fluorescent lighting to light large areas because it’s a fairly inexpensive option. Unfortunately, your eyes pay the price.

What Kinds of Eye Problems Can Fluorescent Lighting Cause?

Exposure to harsh fluorescent lighting can cause eye strain and blurred vision. The longer you’re exposed to the light, the more likely you’ll experience the problem. Symptoms of eyestrain include sore, burning, watery or dry eyes. Double vision and increased sensitivity to light can also occur. At times, you may feel that it’s hard to keep your eyes open or concentrate on your work. Headaches are common, particularly if the fluorescent lights flicker. If you suffer from migraines, exposure to the lights may cause more frequent episodes.

Overhead fluorescent lights aren’t the only cause of the problem. Compact fluorescent lights (CFL), an energy efficient substitute for incandescent bulbs, can trigger the same symptoms. Researchers who published an article in the American Journal of Public Health noted that exposure to both traditional fluorescent lights and CFLs can increase your eye disease risk because fluorescent lights produce an artificial source of ultraviolet (UV) light. Frequent exposure to UV light can cause several eye diseases, including cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

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