With our digital-focused society today, many individuals now have jobs that require them to stare at their computers for long periods. It’s not uncommon to experience eye discomfort and vision problems when viewing digital screens for hours at a time. These eye problems fall under Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), also known as digital eye strain. It isn’t one specific eye health issue. Instead, it encompasses a whole range of eye and vision-related problems arising from prolonged use of computers, cellphones, tablets, and e-readers.
Many factors contribute to the amount of strain your eyes and body experience as you work on a digital device. Any combination of the following can cause discomfort:
Poor room lighting.
Poor seating posture.
Blinking less than usual.
Incorrect viewing distance.
Pre-existing vision problems.
Improper angle of your head.
The type of CVS symptoms experienced depend on each person. But, it generally includes eye strain, dry eyes, irritated eyes, headaches, and stiff neck, and back pain.
There are some steps you can take to ease the symptoms of CVS. These include the following:
Reduce glare from digital screens. The letters on your computer or phone screen are not as sharp as those on a printed page. Reflections and poor contrast between the screen contents and background compels your eyes to work harder, resulting in sensitivity to light. Experts recommend that the center of the screen be at least 20 inches from your eyes and not less than four inches below eye level.
Take regular breaks. Use the 20-20-20 rule to prevent eye discomfort. All you need to do is look away from the screen every 20 minutes to focus at something about 20 feet away for approximately 20 seconds. After a couple of hours of continuous use of a digital device, take a break for 15 minutes to rest your eyes.
Limit screen time. Extended screen time is not only bad for your eye health, but it can also affect your sleep cycle. Since screen time keeps you awake longer, it doesn’t give your brain ample opportunity to slow down. Consequently, it makes it more difficult for you to get a restful sleep. To avoid this, you have to limit your screen time before going to bed. Start gradually by putting away your phone 30 minutes before bedtime and then increasing it to one hour.
Visit your eye doctor regularly. Those who miss their eye checkups may already have undiagnosed ocular health issues due to prolonged screen use. Others may have outdated or uncorrected eye problems, which can contribute to CVS. It’s also important to note that those who don’t require corrective glasses or contact lenses may need a pair specifically designed for device use. Visiting your eye doctor at least once a year can help diminish your risk of developing CVS and other eye problems.
Are you experiencing any signs of digital eye strain? Visit Vision Tech Optometry Center Inc. today. Our team of experts will be happy to restore your vision and improve your quality of life. Call our clinic in Waynesboro, Virginia, now to schedule your consultation.