Dr. Davis

Six Tips: Eyestrain and Computers

There is no way to escape computer screens these days, and no matter what line of work you are in, you are bound to experience some degree of asthenopia, or eyestrain.


Gainesville, VA -- (SBWIRE) -- 11/23/2012 -- Many who spend the day behind a computer screen find their eyesight compromised in a number of ways, in addition to just feeling exhausted after eight hours of sitting and staring. Our eyes were designed to move and adjust, focusing near to far and side to side, during all kinds of natural light conditions, not to be steadily focused all day, every day, on a backlit electronic screen.

Subjecting the eyes to such conditions can have consequences, not the least of which being eyestrain. If you spend more than five hours a day working on a computer screen, consider the following tips to keep your eyes focused and functioning at their best:

- Schedule a regular comprehensive eye exam. If you work exclusively on computer screens or just spend large blocks of time on them, you may be surprised by how helpful an exam from a developmental optometrist can be, addressing any current issues through a program of vision therapy. Eyes weren’t designed to spend the day focused on a backlit digital screen at intermediate range. Learn how to exercise and care for your eyes when long screen sessions are a part of your life.

- Adjust lighting to a comfortable level that eliminates glare. If you work in an office with lighting that cannot or will not be changed, consider getting fitted for a pair of computer glasses designed to reduce eyestrain by focusing specifically on the intermediate range. Look for a pair with a special coating to reduce glare. That’s important for regular prescription eyeglasses as well.

- Reduce glare by arranging your computer screen location to a spot where it receives the least glare from artificial as well as natural light.

- Adjust the angle of your screen to between 15 and 20 degrees; the distance to between 20 and 26 inches from your eyes; and the height to between eye level and four inches below. The combination will go a long way toward minimizing neck and shoulder aches as well as eyestrain. Adjusting screen brightness and text size to comfortable reading levels will also help.

- Blink. And remember to do it often. Long computer sessions often result in intense gazes without blinking. Blinking moistens the eyes, and keeps them protected with a film of tears. Not blinking dries them out, making them red and irritated. This is especially important in offices with dry air and offices that lack humidifiers.

- Practice 20-20-20. That would be moving your gaze from your computer to a point 20 feet away for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes during computer use. There are apps and small programs that can downloaded to remind you to do so. Also, take breaks. For every two hours spent at the screen, walk away for 15 minutes, or at least close your eyes and allow them a brief rest.

If you have vision concerns stemming from intermediate range computer work, you could just Google your query. If you prefer, seek the advice of an experienced professional by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Tod Davis at Developmental Optometry & Vision Therapy is your source for solutions. Addressing vision disorders and prescribing vision therapy programs for Eastern Virginia residents for over 30 years, Dr. Davis can provide you with exercises to maintain, and in some cases improve, good visual performance that endures computer screen marathons with ease. Visit DavisVisionTherapy.com for more information.

Dr. Tod Davis published earlier about “Vision Therapy Expert announces speaking engagement at JCC of Northern Virginia” and now came with lazy eye vision therapy for all.