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5 Simple Exercises to Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome

General

Dr Chirag
Dr Chirag
7 min read

As the name suggests, Computer Vision Syndrome classifies all the eye problems caused due to excessive use of electronic devices like computers, laptops, cell phones, television, etc.

Working for 8 hours in front of your computer or laptop, spending sleepless nights infinitely scrolling on social media networks, binge watching your favourite television series; all of this can actually cause serious strain to anyone’s eyes. Hence, Computer vision syndrome.

As per eye specialists, regularly practising some basic exercises and computer habits can prevent Computer Vision Syndrome.

Here we have enlisted some exercises and habits that you can adapt to ease your eyes during endless hours of computer interaction.

Incessant Blinking: Blink your eyes frequently. When we work on a computer, the layer of tears on our eyes evaporates rapidly. Not blinking often restricts the moisture to accumulate again thus, leading to dry and itchy eyes. Therefore, while sitting in front of your computer screens do not forget to repeatedly blink your eyes. While you do so, do not just let the eyelids have a soft brush against each other, blink softly but entirely close your eyes.

Reduce the glare: Computer screens are reflective in nature and thus, creates glare. It is extremely uncomfortable and can cause excessive strain to the eyes. You can cut down the glare by either changing your sitting position or eliminating the nearby sources of light.

The 20-20-20 Rule: While working on the computer you should take mandatory and frequent breaks to look away in your surrounding and ease up your eyes. To do so in the most effective manner, you can follow the 20-20-20 rule. According to it, you should look 20 feet away for 20 seconds in every 20 minutes of working on the computer. This gives your eyes the necessary distraction and your eye muscles get the required relaxation.

Vision Exercise: One prominent eye exercise that you should include in your daily routine is the Pencil-Vision Exercise. It is very simple and extremely effective. Hold a pencil in your hand at the length of your arm. Now, focus at the tip of the pencil and slowly bring the pencil close to your nose. You might see two pencils instead of one as it reaches close to your eyes. This exercise helps the eye muscles to relax and align. Do this exercise 5 to 10 times repeatedly and you will surely sense the ease in your eyes even after working the whole day.

Palming and massaging the temples: Sometimes, after working on the laptop for a long while, we feel a terrible ache in the temples and the region around our eyes. This is usually experienced due to the strain caused to the eye muscles because of unceasingly trying to adjust to the dynamics of the computer screen. To get rid of this, try to massage your temples and palming your eyes. Take a break, close your eyes for a while and slowly massage your temples in a circular motion with the tips of your finger. Do this for a few minutes. Then, rub your hands together to warm them up and place them on your eyes for a minute. Both of these motions instantly help your eye muscles relax and rest.

Some Statistics Behind Computer Vision Syndrome

  • Studies have indicated that 50 to 90 per cent of computer users suffer from computer vision syndrome or digital eye strain up to a certain level.
  • Most common symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome include headaches, blurred vision, neck pain, fatigue, eye strain, dry eyes, irritation in the eye, double vision, dizziness, and difficulties in focusing.
  • CVS is becoming a global public health issue as most people around the world spend a considerable amount of time looking at some sort of digital screen.
  • CVS is also known to reduce productivity for office workers by a large margin and studies have suggested a direct relation between proper vision correction and productivity, especially when it comes to workers who use computers for the majority of their work.

Office Policies for Dealing with Computer Vision Syndrome

Most of the people who suffer from computer vision syndrome due to the nature of their work which heavily involves working on computers and digital devices for extended periods of time. Here are some pointers that can be considered to reduce the impact of computer vision syndrome on office workers:

  • Use a lighting set-up that takes computer vision syndrome in consideration:
    • Position the computers in such a way that there is a minimum amount of glare on the monitors.
    • Use computer screens that filter out blue light.
    • Reduce the amount of fluorescent lighting in the office space.
  • Encourage employees to follow a routine of regular comprehensive eye examinations.
  • Create an eye-friendly working environment where:
    • The staff are encouraged to follow techniques that prevent computer vision syndrome, as highlighted in this article, like following the 20-20-20 rule.
    • There is an on-going effort to raise awareness about computer vision syndrome and how it affects individuals. This can be done by including useful infographics on notice boards, having monthly or weekly sessions relating to eye care and workplace safety with an eye care expert to ensure all the employees have excellent eyesight.
    • Air conditioners and heaters are checked on a regular basis and their use is conducted in such a manner that does not cause people to suffer from dry eyes.

Computer Vision Syndrome Lowers Quality of Life and Productivity

Even though studies suggest that computer vision syndrome does not cause long-term damage to the eyes, it significantly affects the quality of life with its symptoms and affects the productivity of workers.

If you’re suffering from the effects of computer vision syndrome, which is very likely as 90% of people who use a computer for more than three hours in a day do, then you can significantly improve your productivity and quality of life by following a few simple tips as provided in this blog.