World Sight Day 2023: Looking after your eyes at work

Today, 12 October, is World Sight Day (WSD), and Moorfields is joining forces with the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) to raise awareness of good eye health.

The theme of this year’s WSD is ‘eye health in the workplace’ and our consultant, Badrul Hussain, has put together some tips on how to protect your peepers at your place of work, whether that’s at home, in the office, or outside.


The 20, 20, 20 rule

For those of you working on screens, it is important to take regular breaks. Using a screen in itself won’t cause dry eyes, but if you are spending a long time in front of screens, you don’t blink as often, and this can lead to dry, irritated eyes and blurred vision.

To help avoid this, you can use the 20, 20, 20 rule - look at something 20 feet away from you, for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes.

You can also use some eye drops, which you can pick up from your local pharmacist or optician. Extra lubrication from these can ease the problem of dry eyes. If the problem persists or worsens, make an appointment to see your GP or optician.


Get an eye test

It is recommended that adults have sight tests every two years. Having an eye health check up at your local optician can help to assess if there have been any changes in your vision. They can, in some instances, also identify other health conditions, such as diabetes. Some people qualify for free sight tests. Visit the NHS website at to see if you are eligible.


Wear your glasses

If you have been prescribed glasses, it is important you remember to wear them when you need them. They will help to reduce any strain you are experiencing and could even prevent you from tripping on hazards you may not have otherwise spotted. This is especially important when driving.


Contact lenses

If you use contact lenses, you should always wash and dry your hands prior to handling your lenses. If you use reusable lenses, always use the recommended solution for rinsing and storing, not water. You should also not shower or swim in your lenses. Water can contain microbes that can stick to your lenses and find their way into your eyes, increasing the risk of contracting an eye infection.


Protective goggles

If you work on a building site, in a lab, or are even doing some DIY, remember to wear googles to protect yourself from any debris or harmful substances getting into your eyes.

The same goes for setting off fireworks when it comes to Bonfire Night. Wear goggles or glasses and remember to stand well back from lit fireworks.


Get outside

Spending time outside provides all round health benefits and is also good for your eyes. Did you know, spending too much time inside can increase the risk of myopia (short-sightedness) in children. So, get outside with your colleagues and loved ones and soak up some Vitamin D at the same time. Sunglasses and a hat are advised in hot, bright sunshine, and you should never look directly at the sun. Be sure your sunglasses are carrying the CE mark and provide the correct level of protection.



12 October 2023