With just about everybody moving their offices to their bedroom, and their board rooms to chat rooms, we are completely inundated with screen time. Unfortunately, this higher level of time online can have long-lasting effects on your quality of vision. If you’re on a zoom call and your boss seems a bit blurrier than usual, it may be time for an eye examination.
The screen’s effect on our eyesight is widely documented and experienced by millions. Spending hour after hour on our screens can have a wide range of effects on our eyes, and they are struggling to adapt to this new lifestyle. When you’re hunched over, staring into bright lights for egregious amounts of time, you’re really putting your eyes through the wringer. The persistent glare, small text, and stark contrasts can take a real toll. This leads to problems ranging from headaches to shoulder pain, and from dry eyes to blurry vision.
So, rather than burn our computers and quit all of our jobs, how can we mitigate the effects?
One of the best ways to decrease eye strain is actually an easy fix. Simply focus on something else in the room for a brief amount of time every now and then This technique is called the 20-20-20 rule, and it’s a great way to hold onto that 20-20 vision. Set a recurring timer to remind you every 20 minutes, then focus on something 20 feet away from you for 20 minutes. This can help ease the stress put on your eyes and prevent symptoms from developing.
If you can adjust the lighting from your computer and in the room that you typically work in, this can pay huge dividends for your eyesight and the level of strain they are put under when focusing on the screen. Get rid of those awful fluorescent lights, decrease your screen brightness to match the level in the room, and use natural lighting!
And finally, just remember to blink! You’re not in a staring contest with your computer, and spoiler alert, you’d lose every time anyway. When starting at our computer screens we tend to blink far less than what is considered healthy for our eyesight. This drys out the eyes and puts easily avoidable stress on your vision.