How to prevent eyestrain
Asthenopia, or eyestrain as it’s usually called, is a common condition that occurs because of prolonged visual tasks, like reading or, in many people’s cases, using a computer. Symptoms include headaches, blurred vision, fatigue and eye pain. If you spend extended periods of time sitting in front of a computer screen, you’ll probably have fallen victim to eyestrain, and you know how uncomfortable it can be. Here are just a few tips on how to prevent eyestrain.
Position your lighting correctly
It’s important not to have too much natural or artificial light in the room that you are working in. One of the main reasons why eyestrain occurs is because of computer glare, so make sure to position your lights so as not to reflect on the monitor. Turn off any bright lights and use desk lamps at either side of your monitor – the room will be sufficiently lit, without causing glare.
Adjust your monitor
Be sure that the top of your computer screen is at eye level and, approximately 30 inches away from where you are sitting.
Take regular breaks
Taking frequent breaks can help to alleviate any symptoms of eyestrain, but is also a preventative measure. Take a break at least every half an hour – stand up and have a walk around to stretch your limbs and muscles. Set a reminder on your phone or computer to go off every half an hour, ensuring that you take a break.
Exercise your eyes
The 20-20-20 rule is the perfect way to exercise your eyes while using your computer. Every 20 minutes, focus your eyes on an object located 20 feet away from you for 20 seconds. This will give your eyes a rest from your screen’s brightness.
Organise your workstation
Use a copy stand to prop up any documents you need to refer to while you’re working, and ensure that your keyboard is placed directly in front of your monitor. This will mean that your eyes won’t struggle to adjust to objects at varying distances.
If you do start feeling the symptoms of eyestrain, close your eyes and relax your eye muscles. You can also take painkiller to soothe any muscle- or headaches. Avoid using your computer for the rest of the day, and you should feel refreshed by the morning!