What is Computer Vision Syndrome?
If you wear glasses and also stare at a computer screen for the majority of your day, you may have experienced different eye strain symptoms.
What you may not not is there is something called computer vision syndrome, which causes harm to a person’s eyes from excessive computer use. While a lot of what we do nowadays is online, there are ways to prevent this syndrome and eye damage.
Continue reading to learn more about computer vision syndrome and the different ways to prevent eye damage from a computer screen.
So, What is Computer Vision Syndrome?
Computer vision syndrome is also referred to as digital eye strain. The syndrome describes a group of eye or vision-related problems that result from prolonged use of a computer, cellphone, tablet, e-reader, or any other digital device.
Many people will experience eye discomfort or blurred vision when viewing digital screens for extended periods of time. The discomfort will worsen the longer a person stares at a screen.
The average worker spends seven hours a day behind the computer screen either at home or in an office. For most, computer use is a necessary tool at work, so it’s important to know different ways to protect your eyes while you still completing your tasks at work.
Symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome
There are many different symptoms from excessive use of the computer. Here are some:
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Blurred vision
- Dry eyes
Eye Damage From Computers
Studies have shown that people who spend a lot of time on devices that project blue light have damaged the light-sensitive cells in their eyes, which can lead to macular degeneration. This is the most common cause of permanent vision loss.
Protecting Eyes From the Computer Screen
While the symptoms will differ for each person, uncorrected vision problems like farsightedness or eye coordination abilities, changing of prescriptions and aging can all contribute to the development of these vision symptoms when looking at a device.
There are many ways to help protect your eyes from a computer screen. One of the best things to do is follow the 20-20-20 rule. We think it’s important to take a 20-second break, stare at something 20 feet away, every 20 minutes.
The good news is that many of these symptoms will stop once a person isn’t looking at a screen anymore. However, some people will continue to experience these symptoms and they could get worse over time.
Blue Light Blocking Glasses
We suggest the use of blue light blocking glasses if you’re continuing to experience the symptoms of computer vision syndrome and wear glasses.
These lenses can fit into normal frames and block the blue light that comes while you’re working, checking social media, gaming, or studying on your computer.
Did you know that the sun emits 500 times more blue light than your digital devices? Blue light glasses also help protect your eyes from UVA/UVB light coming from the sun’s rays.
Blue light tricks your brain into thinking it’s time to wake up instead of going to sleep. This causes sleep cycle disruption when you look at a digital device too close to bed. We suggest that you set a “go to bed” alarm on your phone for 1-2 hours before your bedtime. When that alarm goes off, it’s time to shut off devices to show your brain it is bedtime.
Contacts to Help with Computer Vision Syndrome
In 2016, CooperVision launched Biofinity Energys to help digital device users deal with the discomfort that happens with long hours of screen use.
Biofinity Energys contacts are designed for all-day wear and use a two-fold approach to combat device related discomfort. A multiple front-surface aspheric curves across the optical zone stimulates positive power to the center of the lens. This helps reduce the strain on the eye muscles for the wearer.
The lenses also have a smooth, naturally wettable surface design with a special rounded edge. This will also help with comfort.
At Orchard Park Optometry, we carry the Biofinity Energys contacts if they’re of interest to you.
It’s Time to Get Your Eyes Checked
If you have more questions about computer vision syndrome or if you’re at risk of it, book an appointment at Orchard Park Optometry today. Like we mentioned above, one way of protecting your eyes is by having regular eye exams. This will make sure you aren’t wearing glasses that have the wrong prescription in them, which can cause even more eye strain.