If you spend more than a couple of hours a day staring at the computer, you could be at risk for computer vision syndrome (sometimes called “Google eyes”). The result of prolonged computer use, symptoms usually include blurred vision, dry eyes, red, itchy, watery eyes, headaches, and even muscle spasms. Heed these tips for reducing eyestrain:
- Monitor placement. Experts recommend placing your computer monitor 20 to 26 inches away from your eyes. This cuts down the strain of looking too closely at a screen, which can result in blurred distance vision.
- Blinking. Research shows that people normally blink about 12 times per minute, but computer users blink only five times per minute. The longer you keep your eyes open, the more likely your corneas will dehydrate, burn, and ache. Blinking more ensures that you keep your eyes lubricated and clean of air particles.
- Lighting. Much of the eyestrain associated with computer use is caused by poor lighting and screen glare. To keep strain at bay, make sure your workspace is well lit. You can also use glare protectors over your monitor.
- Frequent breaks. Experts recommend that you take a break from computer work every 15 minutes. All it takes is a quick glance around the room to allow your eyes to focus on distant objects. Doing this will give the muscles in your eyes time to relax a bit.