Most jobs nowadays cannot function without computers, but with the prolonged use of electronic gadgets, digital eye strain has become more common in the past few years. The condition causes fatigue, eye redness or irritation, eye twitching, headache, neck or shoulder pain, reduced attention span, irritability, and reduced productivity.
What can you do to reduce the digital eye strain?
Routine Eye Examinations
If you think you have digital eye strain, you should schedule an eye examination with an ophthalmologist as soon as possible, and book appointments annually thereafter. The doctor will be able to prescribe treatments and give advice to reduce eye strain. Eye examinations will also be able to detect any problem that you have not determined yet or if you need to use eyeglasses to protect and correct your vision.
Take Breaks at Work
Even if you use a special eyewear to reduce eye strain, you still need to take short breaks every 20 minutes. Close your eyes for a while or look at an object 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. The 20-20-20 rule will allow the eyes to recover by rehydrating the corneal surface. You should also get up and walk around for a few minutes to ease the tension on your back and arms.
Minimize the Glare
One of the causes of eye strain is the exposure to glare for a prolonged period. Make sure that your desk at the office is not facing or behind the windows. Install an anti-glare screen on your computer and wear eyeglasses with an anti-reflective coating. You can also consider changing the position of the screen whenever you sit in front of the computer, with a distance of at least 50 centimeters away from your eyes.
Use Correct Lighting
The office should have adequate lighting that is not too bright, because it can hurt your eyes. Exterior lights or natural lights passing through the windows should also be reduced with the use of blinds or drapes. The light bulbs, too, should be changed into low-intensity tubes or bulbs.
Use LCDs for Your Computer
To reduce the glare, you should use an LCD or a liquid crystal display monitor that has an anti-reflective surface. That’s because a CRT or cathode ray tube monitor can cause eye strains from flickering images. If it’s not possible to have the CRT monitors replaced in the office, you should adjust the display instead to get the best possible resolution.
Change Your Computer Settings
Even if you’re using an LCD monitor, you should still adjust the brightness, color temperature, contrast, and text size of the display to reduce eye strain. The brightness should be the same as the surrounding area of your desk, while the color temperature should be adjusted to reduce the blue light that can worsen eye strain. The text size and the contrast of the display, however, should be adjusted based on your level of reading comfort.