One of the most common problems with the human eye these days stems from computer usage, especially in the developed world where PC usage is higher on average. How much are contacts going to help? Not much since the average American will stare at a screen for upwards of 9 hours.
This long usage does take a toll on the eyes, but there are steps you can take to try and mitigate this damage over time. Here are some pieces of advice from professionals at Lens.com for those who wear contact lenses or glasses.
Keep Some Distance
Your optometrist would offer the same advice as your mom: don’t sit too close to the television! You should maintain an optimal distance of 20-30 inches between your eyes and the monitor.
Don’t worry, you won’t need a ruler, you can just use your arms. Hold your arm straight and measure the distance between your shoulder and your monitor. As a bonus tip: practice proper posture and elevate your monitor if you need. Your back will thank you later in life.
Ever notice that your vision feels blurry after a long session at the computer? Stepping away for a few minutes every half hour or so will help with that strain. If you can, try and schedule at least six small breaks throughout your day. Take time to stretch your shoulders and neck as well. These mini breaks keep your mind fresh, your eyes ready, and they are good for your body.
Don’t Forget to Blink
One of the most underrated pieces of advice in daily eye care is just blinking. When we stare at screens, our eyes may go long distances without moisture. Blinking keeps that dryness from doing its worst, so you should consciously try your hardest to blink every few seconds. Aim for 10-15 second intervals, but just consciously blinking fully is already a step in the right direction.
If you begin to experience eye strain and dryness, and you’re a contact lens user, try artificial tears.
Don’t Underestimate Lighting
Good lighting can be helpful in reducing eye strain over time. Indoor lighting tends to use fluorescent bulbs. Coupled with glare from outside and your office time can do more harm than good. There are two ways to fix these problems. The first is to darken your room with curtains or blinds to prevent outside light from seeping in. The second is to install an anti-glare screen to your monitor.