Screens—we can’t live with them and we can’t live without them. If we’re not working at a computer all day, we’re answering emails on our phones, watching a show on Netflix or reading an e-book before bed. Hell, if you’re reading this, you’re staring at a screen! All those screens must have an impact on our eyes and they do indeed. Luckily, there are ways we can have our cake and eat it too. Here are a few easy eye-care tips to follow if you spend most of your day in front of a screen.
Wear proper eyewear
This is probably the best advice you can get: If your doctor prescribed any vision aids, make sure to wear them! If you have any condition, it’s very important to use your eyewear, especially when working on the computer. There are even special glasses made for computer use and can boost comfort and minimize eye strain during monitor use. If you’re wearing contacts, try switching to glasses during your longer computer sessions. Contacts can cause some dryness and discomfort which can further damage your eyes.
Try artificial tears
Since we tend to blink less when using the computer, our eyes tend to become dry and irritated. Also, offices often have very dry air which further boosts the moisture evaporation from the surface of the eye. Luckily, you can grab a bottle of artificial tears or eye drops that will maintain the moisture of your eyes and provide you with more comfort.
Get regular eye checks
Make sure to see a specialist regularly and get your eyes checked. Your eye care professional will perform a complete eye test that will ensure the health of your eyes. Many optical stores today offer online eye test bookings, so you really don’t have an excuse to miss your appointments!
Try practicing 20-20-20 rule
This is an exercise that will relieve digital eye strain and relax your eyes without compromising your work. The 20-20-20 rule goes like this: every 20 minutes of work, look away from the screen and focus on an object that’s at least 20 feet away from you. Keep your gaze for 20 seconds and your eyes will instantly feel much better!
Maintain your distance
If you sit too close to your computer, your eyes constantly have to stay strained in order to maintain focus. So find a sweet spot by keeping your monitor (or any other screen) about 20 to 28 inches away from your face and place it just below your eye level. According to research, this is the optimal screen placement.
Glare causes your eyes to work overtime trying to decipher the text that’s hiding underneath. The main reason we have glare on your screens is natural light from your window, so make sure to place your screen at a light-protected place. You can also install dimmers on your overhead lighting to reduce brightness or you can invest in a glare filter for your screens.
Turn on your lights
While too much light causes glare, you shouldn’t spend time in a room where the only light source is your screen either. A small lamp is the bare lighting minimum that will reduce the impact of the bright screen on your eyes.
Find a comfortable setting
Oftentimes, your screen is too bright or too dim for comfortable use. However, today you can set all sorts of preferences and play with various settings until you find something that suits your eyes. Additionally, your font might also cause eye strain. Letters that are so small that they cause squinting will result in eye strain. So, keep your text larger and provide a good contrast with the background (black letters on a white background is the ideal solution).
Take plenty of breaks
While you can’t completely ditch your computer, you can certainly spare some breaks and step away from your desk. This move is great not only for your eyes but also for your back, neck and legs. Take a walk around the office, go grab a glass of water or just lay back in your chair and close your eyes for a few minutes.
Make sure to keep your eyes healthy today and you’ll reap so many benefits in the future. While restoring your eyesight is possible today, it’s so much better to practice good preventive measures, so pamper your peepers and you’ll always have 20/20 vision!