Whether we’re at work or at home, the way we spend time almost always involves a screen. Our lives are becoming increasingly more digital. Almost everything we need to do can be done in just a few clicks. This could be checking your bank balance, signing up to a gym class, online shopping or binging on YouTube videos.
What is Computer Vision Syndrome?
Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) is a common problem for a lot of people. Anyone can experience vision problems from too much screen time, but you’re much more likely to have it if:
- You work with computers
- You spend your entire commute on your phone
- You spend 7 hours or more staring at your computer or digital device
- You spend your evenings in front of the television
Some people do all the things in the list on a daily basis. Technology has become so much a part of our everyday lives that we don’t think about the pressure that could be putting on our eyes. Not getting enough sleep is another factor that can further aggravate the condition, because our eyes need sleep to recover from the day.
What causes Computer Vision Syndrome?
Staring at screens for extended periods of time is the main cause of Computer Vision Syndrome. Our eye muscles have to focus and re-focus for so many hours a day. When our eyes are in constant use like this, it's no wonder they start to feel strained. This much focus also dramatically reduces our blink rate. Blinking gives vital moisture to the eyes throughout the day, when we blink less our eyes can get extremely dry.
Wearing contact lenses can also contribute to dry eye when combined with excessive screen time. For other ways you can practice good eye care, please see our eye care hub.
What are the symptoms of computer vision syndrome?
The common symptoms for this condition are:
- Dry eyes
- Irritated eyes
- Blurred vision
- Double vision
Is Computer Vision Syndrome permanent?
Computer Vision Syndrome isn’t permanent. You’ll experience Computer Vision Syndrome symptoms for as long as you continue to stare at computer screens for extended times without getting enough sleep or taking adequate breaks. A lot of people feel the effects of this syndrome, but they are so used to the feeling that they just choose to ignore it. We recommend taking steps towards reducing eye strain, even if the symptoms don’t feel severe immediately.
How to cure Computer Vision Syndrome
One of the best ways to alleviate the symptoms of Computer eye strain is the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, looking 20 feet into the distance for at least 20 seconds. Doing this throughout your screen time will give your eyes a much-needed break. Here are some other ways you can keep your eyes fresh and hydrated throughout the day:
- Drink plenty of fluid
- Use the 20-20-20 rule
- Blink more often
- Use eye drops to refresh dry eyes
- Position your screen slightly below your line of vision
- Get enough sleep
Are computer glasses worth it?
Blue light glasses are great for reducing digital eye strain. These glasses can be a stylish addition to your work wardrobe and are likely to help your eyes feel less tired at the end of the day.
Blue light isn’t necessarily harmful, most of the blue light we absorb comes from the sun. When we’re exposed to this kind of light it makes us feel more awake, which is brilliant for the daytime. When it comes to the evening though, try to limit your exposure to screens and artificial light so it doesn’t disrupt your sleep.
Does staring at a computer screen damage eyesight?
Experts say that staring at computer screens won't cause any permanent damage to your eyes. As soon as you reduce your screen time or take regular breaks from it, the symptoms of computer vision syndrome should stop.
Choose Feel Good Contacts for your eye care needs
Along with getting an eye exam regularly and taking breaks from your screen, you can also try our comfi Soothe Drops or the Clinitas Hydrate eye gel to help soothe eye discomfort. Most eye and vision problems are preventable, so make sure to look after your eyes now to avoid developing issues later on.