Staring at a screen for long periods may cause your eyes to feel dry and tired, develop blurry vision, fatigue or eye strain but it won’t cause permanent eye damage. Normally, we blink about 15 times a minute, but studies show we blink half to a third that often while using computers and other digital screen devices.
Eye Ergonomics Tips*
- Sit about 25 inches, or arm’s length, from the computer screen. Position the screen so your eye gaze is slightly downward.
- Many devices now have glass screens with considerable glare. Reduce glare by using a matte screen filter if needed.
- Take regular breaks using the “20-20-20” rule: every 20 minutes, shift your eyes to look at an object at least 20 feet away, for at least 20 seconds.
- Use artificial tears to refresh your eyes when they feel dry.
- If a screen is much brighter than the surrounding light, your eyes have to work harder to see. Adjust your room lighting and try increasing the contrast on your screen to reduce eye strain.
Contact lenses can exacerbate eye dryness and irritation. Some tips for contact lens wearers:
- Give your eyes a break by wearing your glasses.
- Don’t sleep in your contact lenses, even if they are labeled “extended wear.”
- Always use good cleaning practices.
If your eyes are consistently red, blurry or watery, or they become sensitive to light or painful, please call and see one of our eye care specialists.
*American Academy of Ophthalmology