It’s basic and true that we should all wear eye protection as all paint has a certain level of toxins. But the truth remains many of us don’t wear anything or we only wear it when required. So what happens when paint gets into our eyes?
I feel this is like the cigarette commercials that aired on tv a few years ago in the US – informing people about the effects tobacco. So, over the last few weeks I’ve contacted the best of the best eye doctors in the US. Here are a few replies I got back:
(still awaiting from to hear from the American Optometric Association)
Varying by paint type and pH. The damage will range from minor irritation to corneal/eyelid damage. Oil and two part paint will most likely cause the most damage; however, the chemicals in latex will harm the eye. I recommend protective eyewear, non-fogging goggles to avoid any issues.
-Willis Eye Hospital
As you know from being a professional painter, paint is toxic. It can cause irritation to your eyes, dryness. As long as you flush out your eyes every time you paint, you should be ok. Flushing out your eyes will help in keeping your cornea and tear film free of the toxins.
-The Eye Institute
Whenever you work in such a way that dust, mist, fume or any other projectiles become airborne, you should be wearing eye, and possibly face, protection. There always exists the possibility of eye damage from being struck by a particle irrespective of whether it is toxic or not. The product MSDS or SDS would need to be consulted to determine what specific chemicals are present in the paints as well as what the acute and chronic health effects would be.
-OSHA / HI Gov
Bottom line: once these toxins / paint enters the eye something happens.
To say it doesn’t impact or have an effect on our eye / body somehow is like pulling the trigger of a loaded gun as saying trust me nothing will happen I’ve been doing it for years.
Why, I am on this?
Bottom line: I want to know the truth & to flush my eyes with water after every time I spray rising concerns. Plus, I hope to clearly see my wife & grandchildren. Maybe nothing well come of this, maybe I’m just young, or maybe I am on to something.
Thanks for your interaction and thoughts.
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