Am I at Risk for Computer Vision Syndrome?

When you take into consideration that over 70 million workers globally are at risk for computer vision syndrome and that 50-90% of computer users already have the condition, you might want to learn how to protect your eyes. 

Here at West Vision, Dr. Jacob West and our team are dedicated to providing you and our patients in Tyler, Texas, with the best in vision care. That’s why we’ve compiled this helpful guide to help you find out if you’re at risk for computer vision syndrome. 

What computer vision syndrome is

Computer vision syndrome is more of an umbrella term used to describe all of the eye problems caused by computer use. Conceptually similar to carpal tunnel syndrome, computer vision syndrome is a repetitive use injury. It happens when your eyes follow the same path over and over, which gets worse the longer you continue doing the same movement.

Some ways that computer vision syndrome manifests include:

Working on the computer means that your eyes have to focus and refocus constantly. Your eyes also react to the constantly shifting images on the screen. All of these motions create a strain on your eye muscles. 

Your risk for computer vision syndrome is also higher if you already have vision problems, if you need glasses but don’t wear them, and if you don’t wear the right prescription lenses when you use your computer. 

Risk factors for computer vision syndrome

While most people can’t realistically decrease screen time, there are some things you can avoid. The following may increase your risk for developing computer vision syndrome:

Protect your eyes from computer vision syndrome

It’s important to maintain proper posture while you’re on the computer. Be sure to fix your chair height so your feet can relax comfortably on the floor. Avoid slumping over the computer screen.

You’ll want to rest your eyes for about 15 minutes every two hours of screen time. You’ll also want to place your computer screen 20-28 inches away from your eyes and about 4-5 inches below your eye level (or 15-20 degrees from the horizontal). 

Be sure to blink often. Minimize glare or use a screen glare filter. If it helps, enlarge the font on your computer screen to reduce the strain on your eyes. 

To help with focus, use this simple 20-20-20 rule: look at least 20 feet away from your computer every 20 minutes for about 20 seconds.  

For best eye health practices, be sure to schedule regular visits with us so that we can help detect and prevent vision problems early on. Call us or schedule an appointment right on our website today.

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