Unfortunately, most of you probably endure a lot of screen time, both for work and leisure. This can have a temporary effect on your vision and cause eye strain, or computer vision syndrome (CVS). The amount of time you spend staring at a computer or device, might not be the problem, it’s more the conditions of your working environment that can tire out your eyes.
What are the symptoms of eye strain?
Eye strain can cause difficulty focusing, sore eyes, and blurred or double vision. The symptoms of eye strain don’t only affect your eyes. They can include headaches, dizziness, and neck pain too. This is due to your eyes being tired and your body having to compensate in a number of ways. Many people also experience a feeling of general fatigue.
What causes eye strain?
The most common factors that cause digital eye strain are poor lighting and working conditions. If your workstation is not well lit or set up in an ergonomic fashion then this can put a strain on your eyes. Incorrect posture and positioning of screens is a huge factor affecting both your comfort and your health.
Uncorrected vision problems are also a common culprit of eye strain. Many people need glasses or a change in their prescription and don’t realise it. It’s important to see an optician either way if you’ve been suffering from eye strain. Here are five tips for digital eye strain relief.
- Have your eyes checked
First things first, make an appointment with your optician and have your eyes checked. An eye test will confirm if you’ve developed any issues with your vision or if any existing conditions have changed. You might need new glasses. Make the smart choice and look into new glasses today.
Perhaps the contact lenses you have been wearing are no longer suitable. It might be time to change type or grade. Your optician will be able to advise you about all of this.
- Use proper lighting
Many people suffer from eye strain due to improper lighting conditions where they work or study. The light shouldn’t be too bright or too dim. Natural light is often more comfortable but it can make it more difficult to see the screen when it’s too bright. Here is a guide to proper lighting ergonomics.
Lighting ergonomics is essential for creating a comfortable work environment. This will not only help relieve your eye strain but it will also increase productivity. Lighting is linked to mood and energy levels so it’s very important to have the right balance.
- Modify your workstation
The position of your monitor and posture is fundamental in preventing eye strain and other health problems. Modify your workstation according to proper ergonomics. Your monitor or screen should be at a comfortable height where you don’t need to tilt your head. Your viewing distance should be roughly at an arm’s length.
Be careful with your posture. Your back, neck, and shoulders could also be affected. Everything is connected to ensure you are sitting up straight with your back supported.
- Take regular breaks
Every so often you need to look away from the screen and focus on something else. Take a break to look away every twenty minutes, and a longer break every couple of hours. Looking far away at something else is a good exercise and it prevents your focusing muscles from tensing up.
Some opticians suggest a 20-20-20 exercise which involves gazing at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes. It’s a good reminder to get your eyes off the screen.
- Eye drops for dry eyes
Remember to blink regularly as this helps prevent your eyes from drying out. Alternatively, you could invest in some eye drops. Have a look at some of these recommended brands. These types of drops basically replicate the composition of natural tears, hydrating your eyes.
Spending a long time in front of a screen and wearing glasses or contacts can all cause this fairly common problem. By stashing a little bottle of drops in your bag, you’ll be able to avoid dry eyes at work.