The desk job has long been the bane of office workers. But now, a new threat has emerged: computers and, with them, computer vision syndrome (CVS). The risk of CVS is growing as more people use computers for work, play, and communication.
According to a recent study, CVS affects almost 70% of all computer users. Around 60 million people suffer from it globally, with 1 million new instances added each year.
The good news is that you don’t have to sit in front of a screen all day or at least suffer from eye strain if you take some simple steps to create a healthy work environment for yourself.
What Is Computer Vision Syndrome
Computer vision syndrome is a collection of symptoms that can occur when you spend too much time staring at computer screens. The most common symptoms include headaches, blurry vision, neck pain, and dry eyes.
It’s common among people who spend 3 or more hours a day looking at a screen, which makes sense considering how many of us do just that. According to a recent survey, people spend an average of 6 hours and 58 minutes on screen every day. And an average American spends 7 hours and 4 minutes looking at a screen every day.
Following these little tips can prevent or reduce Computer Vision Syndrome
Make Sure You’re Wearing Your Glasses
As per Statista, the global eyewear market will be worth 170 billion USD in 2022, and it is expected to reach 328.8 billion USD by 2030.
If you wear eye glasses, make sure they’re up to date. If your eyesight has been stable and the prescription hasn’t changed in a while, it’s time to visit an optometrist and get a new prescription for computer glasses.
Your vision is likely to change as you age. So if you don’t see clearly anymore when working on the computer, it’s worth getting an eye exam from someone who specializes in computers.
These doctors will know what lenses are required for close-up work, whether reading or programming. And can also advise about other accessories, such as filters or lights, that may help reduce strain on your eyesight.
Adjust the Position of Your Computer Monitor
Another way to reduce glare is to adjust the position of your computer monitor so that the top one-third of the screen is below eye level and 20 to 24 inches away from your eyes.
Measure the distance between your eyes and your computer screen, then use a ruler to guide where you should place it. You can also use an adjustable-height desk if possible or just tilt it so that it’s closer to you.
Follow the 20-20-20 Rule
The 20-20-20 rule is an easy way to reduce eye strain. Simply look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes. You can also do this while walking around the office, which will also help because it allows your eyes to relax.
Keep Your Screen Clean
You can also keep your screen clean or have a smudge-free screen protector. Screen cleaners can be purchased at most electronics stores and are easy to use.
Simply spray the cleaner onto your cloth, then wipe your screen with it. Make sure you regularly clean both your computer and smartphone screens this way. And don’t use a cloth that’s too abrasive, as that’ll lead to more scratches on them.
Adjust the Lighting in Your Workspace
You can also reduce the glare in your workspace by ensuring that you don’t have any bright lights directly behind you. If you’re using a computer monitor, make sure it isn’t too bright. You might have noticed that when your eyes are tired, they can be more sensitive to light and glare.
One way to avoid eyestrain is to use natural light instead of artificial light. So if you’re working at home or in an office with windows, try sitting next to one so that the sun’s rays will illuminate your work area as well as relieve eye strain caused by working under artificial light for long periods.
Make a Few Simple Changes to How You Work at Your Computer
You can create a healthy work environment for yourself with a few simple changes to how you work at your computer.
- Use the right monitor. For example, if you have an older CRT monitor or laptop that doesn’t have a lot of screen real estate (the amount of space on your screen that displays information), consider upgrading to an LCD monitor with a wider viewing angle.
If you’re using a laptop, look for one with a higher resolution (pixel count) and brightness settings that are adjustable, so it isn’t too bright when working in dark or dim light conditions.
- Invest in an ergonomic keyboard and mouse. This includes those with adjustable heights and wrist rests for comfort, as well as trackballs or mice with scroll wheels instead of buttons that allow scrolling without pressing down on them repeatedly, as most other mice require.
- Set up dual monitors if possible – this has been shown to reduce neck/shoulder pain associated with frequent neck movements from looking up frequently at one display while browsing through documents on another display next to it.
We hope this article has helped you understand what computer vision syndrome is and how to prevent or reduce its effects. It’s important to remember that these changes don’t have to be permanent. They’re just suggestions for making your workspace more comfortable and reducing the risk of developing long-term eye problems later in life.