If you spend a lot of time working on a computer, you may have noticed that after a while your eyes get tired or feel dry. If this happens frequently, you may have Computer Vision Syndrome or CVS.
Symptoms of CVS include:
Pain in the neck or shoulders
These symptoms may show up while you are working on the computer or you may have computer-related vision complaints after you stop looking at the monitor. If your job requires you to spend a lot of time working on a computer, you are more likely to develop CVS. Studies show that between 50 and 90 percent of computer workers complain about computer eye strain.
Here are some tips to reduce Computer Vision Syndrome symptoms:
• Eye exam – Be sure to tell your eye doctor how much time you spend working on a computer and describe any vision complaints you have related to your computer use. An annual eye exam is key to keeping your eyes healthy.
• Lighting – Poor lighting can cause eyestrain -– and that may not mean the light is too dim. Sunlight or bright, harsh interior lighting can make it harder to see the screen. Position your monitor so the window or other bright lights are to the side rather than in front or behind you. Your eyes will be most comfortable looking at the monitor if the light is about half as bright as you would need it for other tasks at your desk.
• Reduce glare – Light that is reflected off shiny surfaces or white walls can also cause computer eye strain, especially if the light causes glare on the surface of the monitor. Cover your windows to prevent direct sunlight from hitting the screen and consider painting walls a darker color. A hood for your monitor can help block glare, as can an anti-glare screen that can be installed over the face of the monitor.
• Buy an LCD – If your monitor is more than a couple of inches thick, you are still using an old CRT or tube-style monitor. This kind of monitor can contribute to computer eye strain. Many of these monitors have a visible “flicker” in the display.