How to Protect Your Eyes When You Spend a Lot of Time Around Screens

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5 April 2018

Your vision is important. Eye strain can cause serious damage to your eyes, alongside causing fatigue and a drop in productivity.

As computers become a more prominent and essential part of many jobs, many of us suffer from eye strain due to staring at a computer screen for much of the day. Eye strain can also happen during down time too, as more television is watched or entertainment on the internet on phones, laptops and tablets is consumed.
By wearing the correct glasses this can be avoided. There are so many types of glasses available to choose from today, including glasses that have anti-glare coatings to avoid the glare from computers and televisions.

Tips on avoiding eye strain at work

Here are a few tips to help implement while focusing on your computer screen or television for long periods of time:

• Take a break every 20 minutes, and look away from your screen every now and again, by focusing on something approximately 20 feet away to give your eyes a rest and some relief. This is called the 20:20:20 rule, and is a great way of ‘exercising’ your eyes to avoid fatigue

• Blink. Blinking is critical to help lubricate the eyes, and those focusing on a screen tends to blink less. If you are struggling to blink more, take time out every 20 minutes to blink slowly and deliberately 10 times

• Take shorter, more frequent breaks from working to help relax the eyes and reduce strain on your neck and shoulders

• Keep your computer screen and television screen clean. This will help reduce strain on the eyes and protect your vision

• If possible, use a larger screen when working

• Glare from your computer screen can cause unnecessary strain on the eyes, so purchase a high quality glare reduction filter for your screen, or ask for one at your job

• Use an LCD screen rather than a CRT screen, which can flicker and use further strain

• Reduce glare through proper lighting, cover windows, and make sure lights are behind or to the side of the computer or television screen. Bright overhead lighting and direct sunlight through windows can cause further eye strain

• Even though you may have good vision, change the size of your font 3 times larger than the normal size to help reduce eye strain while reading the information on the screen

• Adjust your device or monitor to a comfortable brightness, contrast and colour temperature

• Try to keep the lighting in your room at an even level. Contrasting light increases eye strain

• Your computer monitor should be 20-30 inches away from you, about arm’s length

• Have your eyes examined regularly – your optician will give you personal advice on how to prevent eye strain according to your lifestyle

• Minimise glare by installing an anti-glare screen on your computer monitor

Furthermore, minimise glare by getting anti-reflective (AR) coating on your lenses. Anti-reflective coating on your glasses can significantly reduce the amount of strain, glare and reflected light that reach your eyes.

Your optician can professionally help you decide which lens design and options will best suit your needs.