From flight attendants to office workers, there are certain jobs where
glasses and contact lenses can really become annoying. In other professions
(think first responders, doctors, nurses, truck drivers and professional
athletes), glasses and contacts can also affect performance – and
even pose a safety risk – when vision is compromised or reaction
time is delayed.
If you’re tired of hassling with comfort, clarity or job performance
issues due to glasses or contacts, Key-Whitman Eye Center’s
Arlington eye surgeon Amy Honghas this recommendation, “Speak with an eye doctor about vision correction
surgery. Many of my patients have experienced significant on-the-job benefits
following their LASIK procedures. If you’re a good candidate for
refractive surgery, it’s an excellent option to consider.”
Seven professions where workers can benefit from vision correction procedures
like LASIK, PRK and ICLs
No. 1: Office workers
Does staring at a computer screen all day leave your eyes feeling dry,
blurry and irritated? Both contact lenses and glasses could be making
those symptoms – often referred to as
computer vision syndrome– worse. “Contacts act like a sponge that dries out the eyes,
and glasses can increase glare, which can cause eye strain. Having a vision
correction procedure can make a day at the office much more comfortable,”
says Dr. Hong.
Dr. Hong explains how office workers can benefit from LASIK.
No. 2: First responders
According to Dr. Hong, “Time is of the essence for first responders,
who need to respond to emergencies 24/7. Taking time to put contacts in
really isn’t a great option. Plus, if something gets under or on
a contact lens during an emergency, it’s going to be challenging
to remove and clean those lenses on the scene. Glasses can also get in
the way, fog up and be difficult to wear with gear during a fire or natural
disaster. First responders can eliminate these challenges by getting LASIK.”
No. 3: Health care professionals
Like first responders, nurses and doctors need to be ready to act at a
moment’s notice and able to see clearly and comfortably. These were
all concerns for Key-Whitman patient Sarah F., a pediatric nurse practitioner.
Sarah wasn’t a candidate for LASIK due to extreme nearsightedness.
Fortunately, she was a good candidate for another vision correction procedure
with implantable Collamer®lenses (ICLs).
Learn more about ICLs – also known as implantable contact lenses
– in this recent post: Buyer Beware: Why Price Shouldn't Come First When Shopping for LASIK.
When Sarah learned that an alternative to LASIK was available to her, she
was ecstatic. As she explains, “Last year was my 25th anniversary
of wearing glasses and 20th year wearing contacts. I was also having a
much harder time wearing contacts. I work in pediatric oncology with very
strict infection control, which means I often had to wear a facemask with
my glasses. Sometimes my glasses would fog up or slip down in the middle
of a really intense situation. It was so annoying.”
Following her ICL procedure, life on the job – and off – became
much easier for Sarah. “Now I’m always ready to go, and I
look more professional, awake and alert at work. Just being able to wake
up and see is great. Plus, now I can buy cute, trendy sunglasses, and
I also feel like my options for hairstyles have opened up. It sounds so
silly, but I really notice little things like that, which haven’t
been an option for me previously. It’s been such a huge and amazing
difference. I wish I did it sooner!” Sarah says.
No. 4: Flight attendants
Have you ever been on a long airplane flight and noticed how dry the air
and your eyes get? Imagine working in those conditions on a regular basis
and having to deal with dry, irritating contact lenses.
One of Dr. Hong’s patients was regularly experiencing these issues.
As Dr. Hong explains, “A flight attendant came to us because she
was unable to tolerate staying in her contact lenses during long flights.
She also felt glasses were too much of a hassle.
After LASIK surgery, she was able to work comfortably again, without having to hassle with
contact lenses and glasses.”
No. 5: Truck drivers
Both glasses and contacts can be problematic for people who drive trucks
for a living. “Glasses can produce glare and halos, and your peripheral
vision can be compromised, because there is no correction there. Depending
on the thickness of the lenses, glasses can also compromise depth perception.
During long trips, contacts can dry out. Any of these complications can
lead to safety issues, which could be avoided with a vision correction
procedure,” says Dr. Hong.
Dr. Hong discusses how LASIK helps some drivers see and feel better on
No. 6: Professional athletes
Optimum vision and eye comfort play key roles in athletic performance.
According to Dr. Hong, “If you wear glasses while playing sports,
you have to focus on what you view inside the frames only and can’t
rely on peripheral vision. Those two factors combined can lead to issues
with depth perception. Athletes who compete in golf, tennis and ball games
need to accurately judge distance and depth in order to play their best
games, so glasses can be an issue.
“Contact lenses don’t always do the trick either, especially
if you’re playing outside and the wind blows debris into your eyes
or dries them out. We regularly have athletes come in for LASIK because
they want to perform at the highest level and avoid the hassles of glasses
Learn more about why pro athletes and weekend warriors love LASIK in this recent post.
No. 7: Jobs in the great outdoors
If you work outside – hunting and fishing guides, landscapers, golf
course workers, farmers, ranchers and others – you probably put
in a lot of long days. Working long hours combined with environmental
factors that irritate the eyes – wind, smoke, dirt, allergens, pesticides,
herbicides, UV rays, etc. – can make wearing contacts problematic.
“If you’re working outside and lenses dry out, or you get debris
stuck under your contacts, you need to find a place to wash your hands
and clean your contacts. This can be a challenge for people who work outdoors.
Glasses can fog up and get dirty and sweaty in the open air. Refractive
surgery can eliminate the hassles and discomfort that comes with wearing
contacts and glasses outdoors,” explains Dr. Hong.
Are glasses or contacts interfering with your job?
We can help! To schedule a refractive surgery consultation with Dr. Hong
at our South Arlington eye center or with an eye doctor at Key-Whitman’s
Dallas, North Dallas, North Arlington, Mesquite or Plano locations, call us at
(972) 905-9128. If you prefer to connect with us online, please fill out the handy online appointment form here.
ABOUT DR. HONG:
Dr. Amy Hong is a licensed ophthalmologist and eye surgeon who specializes
in vision correction surgery and glaucoma management. She attended Columbia
University and graduated with a double major, earning her Bachelor of
Arts in Pre-Med and Economics. She obtained her medical degree from the
University of Texas in Dallas. A busy mom, Dr. Hong also works at the
Arlington Memorial Hospital and the Health South Arlington Day Surgery Center.