Findings from the American Optometric Association show that above seven out of 10 of employed persons that work every day at a computer monitor (over 140 million ) suffer the affects of computer vision syndrome or eye fatigue. Excessive computer use can result in eye stress and impact eyesight in kids as well as adults. If you spend more than two hours daily in front of a computer screen you are likely to experience some level of computer related eye fatigue.
Effects of Computer Eye Strain
Symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome include vision difficulties such as dry eyes, blurriness, lack of focus or double vision and muscular pain such as headaches, neck pain and tired eyes. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms you may have Computer Vision Syndrome.
What Are The Causes of CVS?
Computer eye strain and computer vision syndrome result from the necessity for our visual processing pathways to adapt to processing characters on an electronic screen in a different way than they do for letters on a page. While our visual systems have little problem keeping focus on printed material that contains dense black letters with sharp edges, they are not as adept with texts on a screen that lack the same amount of clarity and sharpness.
Words on a digital screen are created by pixels, which are most luminous at the center and lower in brightness as they move outward. Consequently, it is harder for our visual processing center to focus on on this text. Rather, our eyes feel more comfortable at the ''resting point of accommodation'' or RPA.
Our eyes involuntarily move to the resting point of accommodation and then have to make a great effort to focus on the text. The constant flexing of the eyes' focusing muscles creates the fatigue and eye strain that often appear during and after computer use. Computer vision syndrome isn't just an issue for computer users. Other handheld devices such as smart phones or tablets can cause similar strain that can be in some cases more severe. Since mobile screens are often small the eyes have to work harder toward focusing on the text.
CVS can negatively affect your productivity so if you are experiencing discomfort it is worthwhile to see an eye doctor sooner than later.
At a computer vision exam, the eye care professional will perform tests to detect any vision issues that could contribute to computer vision syndrome. Depending on the results of the exam, your practicioner may suggest ophthalmic computer eyeglasses to help you work more efficiently at your screen. Additionally, you should think about getting an anti-reflective coating for computer glasses. Such a coating eliminates reflections on the front and back surfaces of the lenses that cause glare and interfere with your ability to focus on images on your computer.
Ergonomics for Computer Vision Syndrome
Ergonomics, or setting up your work environment to reduce the need for your eyes and your body to strain to accommodate, can help reduce some physical symptoms of computer related eye strain. A well lit work area and frequent breaks will cause some relief. Nevertheless, very often computer eyeglasses are also required to fully eliminate CVS.
If you think you are suffering or at risk of computer related eye strain, contact our Ramsey, NJ optometry office.