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Easy on the Eyes: Enhancing Computer Vision

By Optometrist, Kelly Klein O.D.

Let’s face it, our screen time is increasing every day. Computers are becoming more integral in everything we do. Americans are using screens now for around 7 hours each day. If you use a desktop computer every day for work, this article is for you!

Extended computer use can be hard on your eyes in a number of ways. Computer use is tied to increased dry eye symptoms, blurry vision, eye strain and fatigue. To help reduce these issues, there are a few adjustments that can easily be made to your work station.

Maximize lighting: Make sure that overhead lighting is not brighter than the screen that you are using. Position your computer monitor in an area away from bright sunlight.

Correct position: Make sure your monitor is not too high- the top of the screen should be roughly aligned with the height of your eyes. Also make sure that the computer monitor is not too close to you. Recommended distance from your eyes is between 18-24 inches.

Remember to blink: Using a computer greatly reduces our blink rate. Try to consciously blink your eyes throughout the day. If your eyes feel dry by midday, use a doctor recommended artificial tears such as Refresh Optive.

Wear updated glasses: Do not use old prescription glasses. Ask your eye doctor about new lens technologies that reduce exposure to harmful blue light and reduce glare that is produced by computer screens. If you use screens most of the day, consider a pair of glasses that are strictly used at the computer.

Follow the 20-20-20 Rule: Every 20 minutes take a break of at least 20 seconds to look at a target 20 feet away. This will refresh and reset your visual system.