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The Importance of Radiation Glasses and How to Choose the Correct Pair

Aug 13th 2015 at 3:36 AM

Leaded eyewear blocks the high levels of radiation emitted from diagnostic imaging machines. Prolonged, unprotected exposure to the eyes is linked to various cancers and posterior subcapsular cataracts of the eye. Short term, unprotected exposure from incident radiation produced by x-ray equipment can cause radiation poisoning. This condition can cause hair loss, nausea, and weakness. Medical safety glasses with leaded lenses protect the eye by absorbing and scattering the radioactive particles that come into contact with the eye.

Wearing leaded glasses will reduce the amount of scatter radiation to two to three percent. The result is only a couple of micro sieverts of exposure to the eye per procedure. This type of medical, safety eyewear is unique in that lead is embedded into the frame material and glass. The risk of lead poisoning is almost nonexistent because of the unique bonding process between the lead and eyewear materials.

Protective leaded glasses are available with a number of style, fit, and lens options. Personal preference will determine the best safety glasses for an individual.

Lens Options

When choosing radiation glasses, be sure the lens meets or exceeds the industry standards of a lead equivalency of.75 mm. Glass should be clear and easy to see out of. High-light transmission glass with leaded crystal will provide optimal vision clarity. Leaded lenses can be made to accommodate a prescription and take the place of prescription eyeglasses. Additional options for lenses are anti-fog and anti-static sprays to maintain their condition.

Frame Options

A comfortable pair of safety glasses is more likely to be worn consistently than an ill-fitting pair. Options for frame styles include wraparound frames with side shields to provide the maximum exposure protection. Frames can be lightweight, flexible, and adjustable for comfort and versatility. Goggles are also available to fit over prescription eyeglasses.

Proper fit should be verified after choosing a frame style and lens. Nose pieces should be comfortable and fit securely to the nose. Earpieces should extend to the ear and either fit against the head or hook behind the ear providing a secure fit. Safety eyeglasses need to remain secure during medical testing and procedures for the safety of the nurse, doctor, or technologist.

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