SYMPTOMS OF EYE-STRAIN
Whether working at the office, watching movies on a long flight, or even gaming at home… We’ve all felt the result of long hours in front of a computer screen. Blurriness, dryness, and itchiness of the eyes are just the start. Soon headaches lead to watery eyes that lead to difficulty focusing and eventually it’s hard to even think about finishing what you were doing in the first place. Many people dismiss eye-strain on a daily basis as it often goes away with rest, however recurring strain left untreated can lead to serious vision problems. Here we will detail the steps that should be taken to prevent and treat eye-strain.
The most important part of reducing eye-strain comes before the irritation and discomfort even begins. Before you sit down for a long session in front of a computer, ensure your environment is designed to help prevent eye-strain.
Firstly, a high-quality LCD monitor should be placed at roughly arm’s-length at an angle that is straight ahead and free of any glare. Your workspace should be well lit; experiment with various degrees of lighting to help your eyes relax. A clean and properly adjusted monitor will also reduce eye-strain, so dust often and adjust the brightness and contrast settings to a comfortable level. Dryness can affect your eyes as well, in which case a humidifier is an excellent investment.
Maintain good posture when seated at a computer and keep your monitor a few inches below eye-level so that your neck can relax. Finally, be certain to blink often and give your eyes a break every fifteen minutes or so by stretching away from your desk or simply looking away from the screen.
GET A SECOND OPINION
Doing everything you can to ease your eyes, but still suffering from strain and pain? Visit your optometrist! Regular eye exams will help diagnose any changes in your prescription or possible eye health issues, both of which could cause or worsen eye-strain in addition to long-term computer usage. If indeed you use or work with computers or monitors on a regular basis, inform your optometrist so he or she can adjust your prescription accordingly. Most eyeglasses and contact lenses are optimized for printed word, which is not the same as displayed text on a monitor. Explore your options with your optometrist including vision therapy exercises and specialized lenses.