OBJECTIVES To examine the part played by psychological factors in complaints about visual health reported by banking officers who work at video display terminals (VDTs).
METHODS Out of a population of 385 bank workers, a group of 212 subjects without organic visual disturbances (as determined by opthalmological examination) who share a work environment and job duties was selected. Three questionnaires were administered to these subjects: (a) the NIOSH job stress questionnaire; (b) a questionnaire investigating subjective discomfort related to environmental and lighting conditions of the workplace; (c) a questionnaire on the existence of oculovisual disturbances. Correlation and multiple regression analyses were performed to examine for the presence of predictors of asthenopia.
RESULTS Social support, group conflict, self esteem, work satisfaction, and underuse of skills were found to be predictors of visual complaints; social support played a part also as a moderating factor in the stress and strain model; this model accounted for 30% of the variance. Subjective environmental factors, although in some cases significantly correlated with asthenopia, were not found to be strong predictors of the symptoms.
CONCLUSIONS Some part of the complaints about visual health reported by VDT workers are likely indirect expressions of psychological discomfort related to working conditions.
- social support
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