Computer Vision Syndrome

I spend more time than I should staring at my computer screen but perhaps not as much as I used to. Its not uncommon for a lot of people to be staring at their computer screens as it’s usually part of their work day or leisure time. I did a small bit of research on Computer Visions Syndrome or CVS for short (not to be confused with CVS pharmacy) because after long hours staring at my computer screen my eyes start to dry, and I start to get a very slight burning sensation.

According to WebMD the term CVS encompasses a whole range of eye strain and pain experienced by computer users. Not only is it a problem for adults but for kids too, who stare at portable video games and tablets for many hours on end. CVS is apparently similar to carpal tunnel syndrome which occurs as a result of carrying out the same motion over and over again.  I found out that the problem or eye problems of this nature occur more often for those who are nearsighted and that its also a problem as you get older because the lens of your eye becomes less flexible. Once I turn off my computer and rest my eyes the problem dissipates. In a report carried out on CVS the problem exists across a number of different professions or simply anyone who “cannot work without a computer”. Studies have also shown that 70 – 90 percent of people who use computers extensively, have one of more symptoms of computer vision syndrome. I know I fit into that percentage but I am not surprised. The most common complaints include blurred or double vision, burning, itching, dryness and redness – all things that I have experienced.

Some remedies for this problem of CVS are to give your eyes a comfortable focusing distance of about 20 – 26 inches (tape measures out!) from the computer screen and your eyes should be at the level of the top of your monitor. I have tried this and increased the distance but after a couple of hours (or more) there was only a slight improvement or where I was getting less of a burning sensation in my eyes. What I found has worked for me, is to use lubricating eye drops but only a couple of times a day and after 20 minutes, look away from the computer for a minute at something other than your computer screen and I also adjusted the brightness of my screen. CVS doesn’t seem like something I can prevent but just lessen the symptoms. Perhaps the only cure is to just stop looking at computer screens, laptop screens, tablets and portable video games all together? What a cruel mercy that would be.

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