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Eye Safety in the Cubicle

The warehouse and construction sites aren’t the only places that people experience eye damage. The burden of staring at a computer screen for hours on end for days at a time won’t cause permanent eye damage but can cause extreme discomfort, dryness of the eye, and headaches. It’s just as important to take the proper steps for maintaining good eye health while working in an office as it is in the factory. Workers that encounter these symptoms are often considered to be suffering from Computer Vision Syndrome.

What Causes Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)?

Human beings naturally blink approximately 18 times a minute. Research studies show, however, that we blink half that amount while using computers and other digital media (such as tablets and smart phones). This is true whether we are at work or play. The rise of mobile technology more than doubles the risk for CVS, as now portable and mobile device use in the home is a staple of society. Prolonged reading, writing, and strenuous “near work” are also causes of eye strain.

How Do You Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome at work?

  • Sit approximately two feet from the computer screen and adjust the screen so that your eye gaze is slightly downward.
  • Minimize glare from the screen as much as possible by using proper lighting in your work area; invest in a screen filter if necessary.
  • Stick a Post-It note that says “BLINK!” on your computer screen as a reminder to yourself to keep your eyes lubricated naturally.
  • Set the alarm on your phone at 20 minutes internals. Take that time to shift your eyes away from your computer screen and look at an object at least 20 feet away, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use eye drops to refresh your eyes if you notice they feel dry.
  • Consider increasing the font size you use on your computer.

Other Things To Avoid To Steer Clear Of Computer Vision Syndrome

  • Sleep Deprivation – A lack of sleep is a sure-fire way to cause eye irritation. During sleep our eyes get a long period of time to rest and they are replenished by vital nutrients. Especially for contact lens wearers, ongoing eye irritation may lead to swelling and infection.
  • Improper Contact Lens Use – It is imperative that you use and care for your contact lenses properly when using a computer or digital screen often. This helps to avoid eye irritation and a myriad of other vision problems.

If you have never had a problem with your vision due to prolonged computer or digital screen use at work, now is a perfect time to take steps toward making sure that you never experience it. If you are experiencing discomfort, irritation, or headaches at work, it may be worth putting some of these tips into practice. After doing so, if the symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome persist, consult your local Johnson Optometric Associates eye doctor. Make an appointment for your next annual comprehensive eye exam today. We look forward to seeing you.

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