Over the years, working has become much easier thanks to the invention of computers. However, the perceived ease of work comes with a price. With so many people staring into monitor screens these days, there has been an increase in the number of people who experience eye strain after long exposure, the symptoms experienced, range from eye twitching to red eyes, blurred/double vision and even dry eyes. Although this condition does not necessarily cause permanent eye damage, it can cause physical fatigue, headaches, decreased productivity and increased number of work errors. Studies have shown that working for just two hours on a laptop can cause a significant increase in eye pain and vision problems. Glares from the screen, poor lighting, poor posture and even the angle of the monitor are some contributing factors that further escalate eye damage.
Here are a few tips to follow to keep your eyes healthy while using your computer;
• Reduce glare
You can reduce the glare from your computer by cleaning your screen and ensuring that the screen brightness is slightly brighter than that of the surrounding environment. You can also install an anti-glare filter on the monitor, and adjust the screen’s contrast and brightness to help reduce reflections.
• Do not sit too close to your screen
Always sit at a distance equivalent to the length of your extended arm, also make sure your computer screen isn’t tilted and is positioned right below your eye level.
• Blink frequently
Screens have a way of making you stare for a long time without blinking, make sure you take a few seconds to blink a couple times, blinking at intervals will help restore moisture to your eyes and prevent dryness.
• Regular eye checks
Always have your eyes checked regularly. If you already have an eye defect, using a computer will be a lot more difficult. You can also get computer glasses which are designed specifically for looking at computer screens.
• Upgrade your computer display.
You should replace your Old-fashioned CRT monitor screens with a flat-panel liquid crystal display (LCD), like those on laptop computers. LCD screens have an anti-reflective surface which tends to make them easier on the eyes. CRT monitor screens can cause images to flicker which is a major cause of computer eye strain.
• Text display
To avoid eye strain, computer vision syndrome expert Dr James Sheedy advices individuals to adjust their text display to a size three times the smallest size that they can read from a normal viewing position. When reading a text, the best colour combination for your eyes is a black text on a white background, though other dark-on-light combinations may work as well.
• Exercise your eyes
Another cause of computer eye strain is focusing fatigue, reduce the risk of tiring your eyes out by looking away from your computer at least every 20 minutes. You can simply gaze at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds. This procedure is commonly called the “20-20-20 rule”. Looking at distant objects relaxes the eye muscle responsible for focus, this, in turn, helps reduce fatigue.