Computer Related Eye Problems

Vision is one of our most important sensory functions. Just like any other organs, the condition of our eyes changes with age. Our focus is not only on the changes in prescription, but the entire visual system including its function and health...

What is Computer Vision Syndrome?

Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is a temporary eye vision problem resulting from focusing the eyes on a computer display for prolonged, uninterrupted periods of time.Computers, tablets, e-readers, smartphones and other electronic devices with visual displays all can cause tired eyes, digital eye strain and computer vision syndrome.

Reasons for CVS

The main causes of Computer Vision Syndrome include an unsuitable environment and the improper use of eyeglasses or contact lenses. To prevent CVS, changes need to be made to improve these conditions.
When using the computer your blink rate decreases by a drastic 70 percent. Generally speaking means that instead of blinking an average of 14 times per minute, you are now blinking 7 times per minute.

Prevention is better than cure for CVS

• If your eyes are dry or irritated, use eye drops to moisturize and lubricate.
• Place reference to typing materials close to the computer screens.
• Blink frequently.
Visual breaks: A good rule of thumb is 20/20, 20 minutes, look 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
• Avoid shifting at a location with direct blower or an A.C or for a long period in a room with low humidity.
• Install a glare guard, an optically coated glass anti-glare filter.
• Install a screen or partition behind your computer to reduce overhead glare.
• Use a non-reflective paint or coverings on the walls.
• Make sure there is sufficient light to read hard copy without straining.
• Use a stand for hard copy so that source documents and the computer screen are at roughly equal distance from the eyes.
• If any symptoms are worse of you sight is deteriorating, make an appointment to see your eye care professional.
• Adjust the height of your desk or chair so the middle of the computer screen is about 20 degrees below eye level. The screen itself should be 16- 30 inches from your eyes.
• Choose screens that can tilt and rotate. A keyboard that you can adjust is also helpful.
• Electrostatic charge on the computer which attracts & accumulates dust particles which can cause skin rash or irritation in sensitive individuals,
• Clean computer screen regularly.
• Adjustable chair.

Symptoms of CVS

Different problems encountered after prolonged use of computers. You can have some of these problems:

  •  Headaches
  •  Eyestrain
  •  Neck ache and backache
  •  Blurred vision
  •  Dry & Irritated eyes
  •  Sensitivity to light
  •  Double Vision
  •  Red eyes
  •  Contact lens discomfort
  •  Glare sensitivity
  •  Slowness in changing the focus of your eyes
  •  Excessive tearing

How is Computer Vision Syndrome or Digital Eye Strain diagnosed?

Computer Vision Syndrome, or Digital Eye Strain, can be diagnosed through a comprehensive eye examination. Testing, with special emphasis on visual requirements at the computer or digital device working distance, may include:
Patient history to determine any symptoms the patient is experiencing and the presence of any general health problems, medications taken, or environmental factors that may be contributing to the symptoms related to computer use.
Visual acuity measurements to assess the extent to which vision may be affected.
• A refraction to determine the appropriate lens power needed to compensate for any refractive errors (nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism).
Testing how the eyes focus, move and work together. In order to obtain a clear, single image of what is being viewed, the eyes must effectively change focus, move and work in unison. This testing will look for problems that keep your eyes from focusing effectively or make it difficult to use both eyes together.