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As technology advances and many jobs are requiring the use of a computer or a device with a monitor, more Americans are experiencing a form of eye strain known as Digital Eye Strain or Computer Vision Syndrome. This eye strain is caused by viewing a screen for extended periods of time. For many who work a full eight or nine hour day in front of a computer, this can become a big problem.

WHAT IS COMPUTER VISION SYNDROME?

Staring at a digital screen for too long stresses our eyes because it is a source of light. Unlike reading a book or a newspaper, which are printed on paper, reading off of a digital screen is like staring at a light bulb. Your computer screen emits a wide spectrum of light, the worst culprit being blue light. The blue light and glare put off by your computer screen cause the most muscle strain in your eyes. Prolonged exposure to this type of light can eventually lead to greater vision problems.

Symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) include eye strain, blurred vision, headaches, and dry eyes. If you suffer from CVS, doctors and vision correction manufacturers have come up with methods and products that can help reduce your strain and protect your eyes.

SOLUTIONS TO COMPUTER VISION SYNDROME

Some companies, like Gunnar Optics, manufacture computer glasses designed to filter the harsh rays of light and reduce the amount of glare on your eyes. You can also talk to your vision doctor about obtaining prescription lenses with an Anti-Reflective coating on them to protect your eyes from glare from computer screens. Lifehacker reports on a study that reveals 69% of people — in a 121 person study — found Anti-Reflective coating to be helpful for protecting their eyes against Digital Eye Strain, and that customers who bought computer glasses report a significant reduction of eye strain.

Before you decide to purchase computer glasses to solve your eye strain problems, you should practice a few practical methods first:

  • Sit with proper posture. Make sure you have a comfortable chair that can support an upright posture without stressing your body. Your computer screen should be between 20 inches to 28 inches away from your face.
  • Take breaks. For every two hours you work in front of a computer, you should take a 15 minute break away from your screen.
    Use a glare filter. You can get a screen cover that filters the light that is most guilty for affecting glare. These covers are usually less than ten dollars. If you are a designer or if color is important for you job, this might not be the best option.
  • Blink frequently. Blinking keeps your eyes moist. Dry eyes are more susceptible to Digital Eye Strain.

If you try these methods and still experience sore eyes after looking at your computer for too long, you need to visit your optometrist. Your vision doctor will determine if computer glasses will be effective or if you need a prescription to protect your eyes.

Do you need help with maintaining your vision health? Call Silverstein Eye Centers today to make an appointment for an eye exam.

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