There's more to healthy vision than 20/20 eyesight!

Computer Vision

What is computer vision syndrome?

Computers put a tremendous amount of strain on your eye muscles, yet it is impossible to avoid using computers. It is estimated that over 175 million working Americans suffer from computer eyestrain. Nearly 60 million children connect to the Internet each day either at home or in school. If you or your child spend more than two hours each day in front of a computer screen, you likely experience some symptoms of computer vision syndrome (CVS).

It is more tiring to read from a computer screen than a printed book because the pixels that form the letters are not stable, and have less contrast & definition than books. There is an electron beam that scans the monitor and recharges the illumination of each pixel frequently. Your eyes have to continuously "fill in the gaps" to keep the words in focus which causes fatigue and eyestrain. Printed books are easier on the eyes because the characters are dense and have well-defined edges.

Symptoms of CVS include:

  • Overall fatigue
  • Headaches or eyestrain
  • Dry, burning eyes
  • Double vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Neck and shoulder pain

How can computer vision syndrome be treated?

  • Get your eyes checked because even a small, uncorrected prescription can cause eyestrain and decrease productivity. Glasses prescribed for computers balance the eyes and eliminate the constant refocusing effort. This increases comfort, accuracy and productivity. Computer glasses are not the same prescription as reading glasses which are prescribed for a closer working distance of 14-16". Most computer screens are set at 20-24" away. Using the PRIO Vision Tester, we can prescribe the most accurate prescription for your computer eyewear. Computer glasses may keep your eyes from getting worse (more nearsighted) by reducing excessive focusing strain on the eyes, especially for children and teens whose eyes are still developing.
  • Minimize glare on your computer screen with a glare reduction filter; by repositioning your computer screen; by using drapes or window treatments. Anti-reflective lenses will reduce glare providing clearer and more comfortable vision.
  • Take a 20/20 "eye break". Every 20 minutes, rest your focusing muscles by taking a 20 second break. Look into the distance, away from your desk and computer for 20 seconds. For every hour of computer operation, stand up and walk around for 5 minutes while looking at a distance.
  • Ideally, have the computer screen slightly below eye level (about 20 degrees).
  • Eye teaming and scanning problems may require vision training to develop the ability to efficiently track and move both eyes together.

For many people, visual stress can be eliminated through specially prescribed, stress-relieving lenses meant only for computer use. Computer glasses may be the key to making work less stressful, less painful and more productive.

For more information, please visit www.prio.com.