Relieving the Discomfort of Computer Vision Syndrome
It is hard to deny the fact that we live in a largely digital society. On a day-to-day basis, the majority of people spend countless hours in front of a computer, cell phone, or tablet. It is virtually impossible to go through the day without looking at an electronic screen. While these devices offer a number of benefits, there are some downsides as well. Primarily, these screens place a lot of stress on the eyes and can lead to a condition known as computer vision syndrome. At Choate Eye Associates, we can diagnose and treat eye conditions to restore the health and comfort of your eyes. Our experienced eye doctors are happy to discuss the symptoms of computer vision syndrome with our Nashville, TN patients, as well as some steps that can be taken to help avoid the discomfort that is caused by this condition.
What Causes Computer Vision Syndrome?
Computer vision syndrome is not one specific condition, but rather a term that is used to describe a number of symptoms that may affect the eyes due to eye muscle strain. Essentially, computer vision syndrome is caused by the repetitive movements of the eyes that are used while a person works on a computer or tablet. Because of the lighting, contrast, flicker, and glare, it is much harder for the eyes to focus on a computer screen than it is to focus on a book or other piece of paper. This condition can affect people of all ages, but it is especially common in individuals over the age of 40, as the eyes become less flexible as they age, making it even more difficult to focus on a computer screen.
Computer vision syndrome is a common problem, especially as society’s use of computers and tablets continues to increase. In fact, it is estimated that over 50 percent (and possibly up to 90 percent) of individuals who work at a computer suffer from at least some symptoms of computer vision syndrome. This condition affects each individual differently and may result in various symptoms and degrees of severity. Some symptoms that are commonly experienced as a result of computer vision syndrome include the following:
- Blurry vision
- Double vision
- Red, itchy eyes
- Dry eyes
- Eye irritation
Managing Computer Vision Syndrome
Reduced time in front of a computer is the best way to alleviate the symptoms of computer vision syndrome, but for most, that is not a viable option. Fortunately, there are some steps a patient can take to help control computer vision syndrome and restore some basic eye comfort. Below are some tips that can be helpful in managing computer vision syndrome:
- Reduce the glare of the computer by moving the monitor or changing the lighting around the computer
- Position the computer monitor so that it sits slightly below eye level and at least 20 inches from your face
- Adjust computer settings (such as brightness, contrast, and font size) to make it suit your personal vision needs
- Look away from the computer screen at least once every 20 minutes, allowing the eyes at least 20 seconds of rest
- Maintain a schedule of regular eye exams to ensure that vision prescriptions are accurate and that no other conditions are present
It is important to care for the eyes in order to ensure their long-term health, and routine eye exams play a vital role in that care. If you are in need of a routine eye exam, or are concerned about the health of your eyes, the experienced eye doctors at Choate Eye Associates can help. Contact us at your earliest convenience to learn more about our comprehensive range of eye care services.