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Ultimate Guide to Help Combat Computer Vision Syndrome

Bill Gates believes “computers were born to solve problems that didn’t exist before.” However, we can’t ignore the fact that computers also cause issues humans never had to deal with. A while ago, The Independent published a survey of 2000 office workers to surprisingly reveal they spend an average of 1700 hours in front of computer and laptop screens yearly.

If you haven’t done the calculations, we’d sadly inform you that’s over 70 full days every year. With computers being a key element in all modern workspaces and even homes, we find ourselves surrounded by screens everywhere we go. Although it might not ring a bell, learning that screens cause a common health issue known as Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) is worth considering.

Computer Vision Syndrome entitles health issues affecting the eyes and the body. Several steps can be taken to combat CVS to mitigate its impact, and this article demonstrates the top 8 practical steps to eliminate its unhealthy effects.

Adjust your viewing angle

Posture, and the angle from which you look at a screen, are important considerations when discussing CVS. Computer ergonomics is what technical people say when describing how to set up a healthy workspace that ensures little to no health issues.

The first step is to ensure the person is sitting upright. It means no slouching and no leaning forward, as this can cause excess stress on the spine. The second thing has to do with how far the monitor is. The wrong distance leads to eye strain and headaches. The proper distance should be with the eyes tilting slightly downwards, about 15 to 30 degrees.

Wear anti-glare glasses

Special glasses designed to lessen the effects of blue light should be a mandatory item in the workspace or at home. When employees wear  quality eyeglasses, they come equipped with filters that enable the eyes to adjust their patterns by reducing the need for constant eye movement. Working with an optometrist to figure out whether anti-glare glasses are necessary is an important consideration. Avoid using over-the-counter glasses as a replacement because they are not the same, and incorrect usage can lead to long-term macular health problems.

Follow the 20/20/20 rule

This rule basically states that the amount of time spent behind a screen should be countered with looking away at something for 20 seconds. It means alternating between periods of 20 minutes of work followed by 20 seconds of rest by looking at something 20 feet away from screens.

Following this rule, it is possible to prevent eyestrain from occurring. The reasoning behind this rule comes from the fact that the eyes need about 20 seconds to relax. Another considerable addition during those 20 seconds is getting up and drinking a glass of water. A hydrated body keeps the retina healthy. Lastly, this rule is not a substitute for breaks or rest.

Be conscious of how often you blink

It has been reported that 90% of the people suffering from CVS have a 50% blinking rate lower than the rest of the general population. The key to avoiding this problem is to blink often when sitting behind a screen for long periods of time.

The time interval required for each blink is 4 seconds between each. This method involves self-awareness and some practice to get the rhythm going. Some might argue that people could become unable to focus on what they are doing by following this method. However, blinking is how eyes rest, which makes it highly recommended. Other options like eye drops or lubricants should be used if ocular symptoms don’t subside.

Rethink your lighting

Since blue light affects the deep cells in the retina significantly, it makes sense to adjust brightness options on a screen to help avoid permanent damage to the eyes. A common rule states that brightness on a screen should match the amount of normal light in a room or workspace.

To determine the suitable amount of lighting for a room, it helps to keep several things in mind. The amount of daylight entering the room should be more than the amount of blue light emitted from the screen. Moreover, bright light sources can be best handled using blinds to obtain an acceptable level of lightning.

Limit screen time

Developing a certain routine that allows for switching between rest and work is essential. Taking breaks every 2 hours for 30 minutes is one option. Moving around, if that’s an option, is also a great activity to keep the body healthy.

Workaholics need to get away from the screen every now and then, and productivity takes a bigger hit when health issues are ignored. Limiting screen time becomes even more critical if users belong to a younger age group since their retinas absorb more blue light.

Get your eyes checked

Scheduling an appointment with an optometrist is never a bad option. A qualified expert can provide the right prescription for ocular and macular health problems, and they also might advise on the best eyewear and special prescription glasses options.

Physicians provide medical advice pertinent to each individual’s needs and can help plan a good routine that balances work and rest. More importantly, an eye care provider is the one who makes the diagnosis to decide on whether an individual is suffering from CVS or not. In terms of using suitable eye lubricants or other relevant pharmaceutical products, eye care providers also have the final say in that as well.

Take breaks

Drinking water, eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits, and stretching during off-hours are all important lifestyle habits that help manage CVS and the accompanying eye stress problems.

Taking a break every 2 hours helps manage work and eye stress. The maximum amount of time spent behind a screen should not be more than 2 hours at any point during the day. Breaks are essential to rest the body from the long hours of sitting. The discussion about physical activity and overall health is a long one. In the context of dealing with CVS, physical activity should involve mainly stretching the shoulders, the upper back, and the neck if possible.


This article has gone over eight ways to help combat one of the most prevalent health issues in the workplace and at home, CVS. Many people ignore these issues and suffer the consequences later in life; their productivity worsens, or their careers end early in severe cases.

The long-term effects of CVS include eye strain, blurred vision, headaches, and postural dysfunctions. That is why adhering to good habits when sitting behind a screen is essential—keeping a good posture, eating healthy, limiting screen time, taking organized breaks, and using the right medical equipment when necessary are all things that can put an end to Computer Vision Syndrome.

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