Our eyes are a complex organ encompassed by muscles that can be overworked. Studies show that 50% to 90% of people who work on computers have some symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS).
CVS, also known as Digital Eye Strain, is similar to carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive motion injuries. It is not one specific issue but a range of eye strain and vision-related problems. CVS occurs when our eyes are focused on a computer or display for long, uninterrupted periods of time, following the same path over and over. Common symptoms include headaches, dry eyes, blurred vision, eye strain, and neck and shoulder pain.
Here are a few steps you can take to help prevent the onset of CVS and reduce eye strain.
Take breaks often:
Every hour or so, take a break from looking at a screen. Walk over to the office kitchen for coffee or water, say hello to a colleague nearby, or do a lap around the office. Moving around will help you feel more energized while giving your eyes a much needed rest from the glare of a screen.
Modify your workstation:
Setting up an ergonomic workstation will help prevent eye strain and fatigue, such as the ergonomic office chair in Buychairs. Light levels along with monitor distance and placement reduce headaches, eye fatigue and neck strain. Place desk lights over paper documents and away from your monitor to prevent glare. Monitors should be arms distance away, at least 20 inches, and the center of your screen should reach eye level. Using a monitor arm allows for effortless adjustments.
Follow the 20-20-20 rule:
If you work at a computer all day, you can use this rule to reduce eye strain. Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and turn your attention 20 feet away. Let this rule work for you. If every 30 minutes is better, try the 30-20-20 method. Giving your eyes a break is more important than sticking around for 20 minutes. Find a schedule that fits the way you work.
It sounds simple, but people tend to blink less often when working on a computer. This can cause dry, red eyes. Consciously blinking more will keep your eyes moist.