Staring at a computer monitor for hours has become a part of the modern workday. All of that staring inevitably puts a real strain on your eyes. Many individuals experience eye discomfort and vision problems while viewing a computer monitor for a long time. The level of discomfort increases with extended use of computers. The name for such eye problems is Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)

What are the common symptoms?

If you have CVS, you may experience some or all of these symptoms:

  • Eyestrain
  • Blurred vision
  • Double vision
  • Dry eyes
  • Red eyes
  • Headaches
  • Body aches (particularly neck, back and shoulder)

What causes Computer vision syndrome?

There are several contributory factors causing CVS

  • Poor lighting
  • Glare in the computer screen
  • Improper viewing distance
  • Poor seating posture
  • Uncorrected spectacle power
  • Decreased blink rate
  • Job nature and stress

Many of the visual symptoms experienced by computer users are only temporary and will decline after stopping computer work. However, some individuals may experience continued reduced visual abilities, such as blurred distance vision, even after stopping work at a computer.

If nothing is done to address the cause of the problem, the symptoms will continue to recur and perhaps worsen with future computer use.

Treatment for computer vision

Refraction :- a visit to an eye doctor to receive or update a prescription is the first step in improving the effectiveness of the spectacles in eliminating the symptoms of CVS. Patients should inform the doctor on the type of visual needs to help him find the right prescription for their eyes.

Contact lenses:- Contact lens wearers need to remember to blink while they work at their computers. Computer use results in a decrease of blinking to almost one third of normal. This causes the eye to dry and become itchy, especially when a contact lens is resting on the cornea.

Eyecare :- Special lens designs, lens power, tints or coating may help to maximize, visual abilities and comfort. Some individuals who do not require the use of the glasses for daily activities may benefit from glasses prescribed specially for computer use e.g. Anti reflective glasses

Proper lighting :- Make sure that room lights are proper and comfortable to the eye to prevent glare on the computer monitor. Use blinds or drapes on windows and replace the light bulbs with bulbs of lower wattage in overhead and desk lamps.

Proper viewing distance :- Position the computer so that your head is in a naturally comfortable position while working. Most of the people find it more comfortable to view a computer when the eyes are looking downwards. The computer screen should be 15-20 degree below eye level.

Seating posture :- Chairs should be comfortably padded. Chair height should be adjusted so your feet rest on the floor. The chair should provide you arm and back support while you are typing.

Blink more often :- Blinking is very important when you are working on computer. Blinking moistens your eye to prevent dryness and irritation.

Anti Glare Screen :- If there is no way to minimize glare form light sources, consider using a screen glare filter.

Rest Breaks :- To reduce risk of CVS take frequent break during your computer workday.
THIS IS THE GOLDEN RULE OF 20 /20 / 20 . Rest your eyes for 20 seconds by looking 20 feet away after every 20 min of computer work. This allows eyes to rest and refocus.

Regular eye examination and proper viewing habits can help to prevent or reduce the development of the symptoms associated with Computer Vision Syndrome.

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