Working and Learning at Home? Keep These Essential Eye Care Tips in Mind

By  //  December 6, 2021

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Having to spend most of your time indoors, with hours of staring at your digital devices while working from home? Likewise, for students who are full home-based learning? Be wary of discomfort or pain, tired aching eyes, or fluctuating vision? These are the tell-tale symptoms of eye strain.

Staring at a mobile or computer screen can cause eye strain. But while reducing the exposure or cutting back on the use of these digital devices isn’t a viable option just yet, you can take active steps to protect your eyes while using them. 

Why Do Screens Cause Eye Strain?

Naturally, humans blink about 15-20 times per minute. Blinking spreads tears uniformly over your eyes, which prevents dryness or irritation. But studies have found that we blink less than half as often when we’re reading, playing, or watching something on a screen. What’s more, the contrast of text against the background, the flickering, and the glare from digital screens can be hard on your eyes. Here’s how to protect your eyes: 

Adjust Your Computer’s Monitor 

The position of your screen is more important than you may think. Actually, it plays a major role in how your eyes feel after a long workday. While working on your device, make sure that it’s placed in a way that does not stress your eyes. 

Place the monitor directly in front of you, at about an arm’s distance away. Position the top of your screen below your eye level to ensure that you’re not staring upwards at the screen, as doing so may increase eye strain. 

Follow the 20/20/20 Rule 

One of the most practical ways to avoid eye strain is the 20/20/20 rule. It works like this, for every 20 minutes you spend working at your computer, you must choose an object to gaze at for at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds straight. By doing so, you will provide your eyes with a much-needed break. It’s not necessary to allocate exactly 20 minutes for that. Feel free to adjust the amount of time you look away from your computer – the longer, the healthier. 

Adjust Room Lighting 

Whether you’re working at the office, at home, or studying, make sure your environment is appropriately lit. Did you know? Less light in your room is actually better for your eyes. Especially when immersed in your computer screen. To ensure your workspace isn’t too bright, use lower voltage bulbs or just close the curtains. 

Reduce Glare 

Install a matte screen protector or an anti-glare protector to reduce the glare from the light reflecting back from your screen. If you wear glasses, purchase men’s blue light glasses as this helps reduce glare by minimizing the amount of light reflected off your lenses’ front and back surfaces. You can also reduce glare from the external environment by simply drawing blinds or shades. If possible, place your computer’s monitor such that the windows are at your side, instead of being behind or in front of your screen. 

High-Resolution Screens 

The average screens you work on today offer refresh times of 75Hz or more. The higher, the healthier. That said, displays with higher resolutions appear and feel more lifelike. When you can’t spot the pixels, it means your eyes don’t work as hard to interpret the images in front of you. 

If you’re battling eye strain and can’t find relief just yet, it may be time to see a medical specialist. A regular eye exam can help you get ahead of any underlying condition affecting your vision.