• Man straining his eyes to read a screen.

Computer Vision Syndrome: What It Is and What to Do

Stud­ies are telling us there’s a good and bad side to all of the elec­tron­ics we rely on to get by.  We all love the way our smart­phones keep us con­nect­ed to loved ones, friends, the weath­er and even impor­tant news. How­ev­er, the caus­es of the vision prob­lems peo­ple are expe­ri­enc­ing are being traced to these small screens. In fact, vision issues caused by these tiny areas even has a name. Com­put­er Vision Syn­drome is com­mon today as more and more peo­ple rely on their smart­phones and oth­er devices.  

At least one eye doc­tor is point­ing to the eye prob­lems caused by cell phones say­ing that one out of every four patients he sees com­plains of eye strain and blur­ry vision from their phones. Part of the prob­lem lies in how our phones dis­rupt how many times we blink per minute. Nor­mal­ly, peo­ple blink about 15 times per minute but that rate is cut in half when you’re fix­at­ing on the mes­sages you get through your smart­phone.

Neck Mus­cles

Squint­ing at those small screens caus­es your neck mus­cles to tight­en up and oth­er symp­toms like blur­ry vision. All of this can lead to blurred vision headaches.  There are oth­er ways our smart­phones are affect­ing our eye­sight. There are  even reports that some of the lat­est updates are affect­ing user’s bal­ance and sta­bil­i­ty. Some peo­ple have even com­plained of dizzi­ness when using the updates that zoom in and out.

So what does all this mean? Are we being cau­tioned against using all the won­der­ful tech­nol­o­gy that has made our lives eas­i­er? Should we put down those smart­phones and walk away from the tablets we love so much?

Blur­ry Vision

Hard­ly.  We now know what caus­es blur­ry vision and what we need to do to keep using our beloved elec­tron­ics while we look after our eye­sight.  

The first bit of advice is one that every­one toil­ing in front of the com­put­er won’t mind hear­ing. Experts sug­gest that you take a break every twen­ty min­utes and stare at some­thing twen­ty feet away for twen­ty sec­onds.  This is called the 20–20-20 rule and it’s a good one to remem­ber whether you’ve got your eyes glued to a smart­phone or work in front of a lap­top all day long.

Blur­ry vision headaches in chil­dren can eas­i­ly be avoid­ed with a lit­tle parental guid­ance. Set­ting some bound­aries and guide­lines for small­er chil­dren works great so they can learn how to mod­er­ate using these elec­tron­ics devices them­selves.

Right Bal­ance

Find­ing the right bal­ance is crit­i­cal. There are some oth­er things we can all do includ­ing mak­ing sure that you keep a safe dis­tance from those small­er screens. Look­ing at what caus­es blur­ry vision when it comes to elec­tron­ics often means keep­ing that smart­phone or oth­er device at least six­teen inch­es away from your face.  

Remem­ber you can also use arti­fi­cial tears to keep your eyes moist. Com­put­er Vision Syn­drome should not be a per­ma­nent sit­u­a­tion. How­ev­er, if you notice the prob­lem per­sists, you should go to a qual­i­fied eye doc­tor to have things checked out.

September 27th, 2016|Comments Off on Computer Vision Syndrome: What It Is and What to Do

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