These days, many of us have jobs that require us to stare at computer screens for hours at a time. That can put a real strain on your eyes.
Eye problems caused by computer use fall under the heading computer vision syndrome (CVS).
It isn’t one specific problem. Instead, it includes a whole range of eye strain and discomfort. Research shows that between 50% and 90% of people who work at a computer screen have at least some symptoms.
Working adults aren’t the only ones affected. Kids who stare at tablets or use computers during the day at school can have issues, too, especially if the lighting and their posture are less than ideal.
What Are The Symptoms Of Bad Eyesight Due To Screen Display?
The symptoms of CVS (Computer Vision Syndrome) may differ from one person to another. Some common symptoms include:
- eye strain
- dry and itchy eyes
- blurry vision
- double vision
- difficulty focusing
- nearsightedness, also called myopia
- neck or shoulder pain and stiffness
Computer vision syndrome occurs as a result of prolonged digital screen use.
Digital screens cause a person’s eyes to work harder than normal. Several factors are responsible for this, including:
- the screen content being less sharp or focused
- poor contrast of the screen’s content against its background
- reflections or glare bouncing off the screen
The following factors may also contribute to CVS (Computer Vision Syndrome):
- viewing the screen in low light conditions
- being too close to or too far from the screen
- positioning the screen at an angle that causes eye strain
- taking insufficient screen breaks
Together, these factors put greater demands on the eyes’ ability to track and focus. These demands are even higher for people who have minor uncorrected vision problems.
If the additional demands on the visual system occur over extended periods, a person may experience symptoms of CVS (Computer Vision Syndrome).
Fortunately, eyestrain and dry eyes are easily treated. It is recommended for you to use artificial tears several times throughout the day. The artificial tears don’t have to be preservative-free. Another tip: remind yourself to blink from time to time.
If you have eyestrain and headaches after looking at the computer screen for long periods, make sure your eyeglass prescription is up to date.
- Adjusting your environment can also help reduce the risk for developing computer vision syndrome. Some ideas:
- Sit about two feet away from a computer screen to reduce eyestrain.
- Make sure the center of the computer monitor is slightly lower than eye level — four to eight inches.
- Use a matte screen filter (about $10) to reduce glare on your smartphone, computer screen, or tablet.
- Use a larger font to keep your eyes from working hard to see letters.
- Reduce glare with softer lighting.