CHICAGO – With an ever-increasing number of consumers relying on technology and gadgets as part of their daily life, the number of those at risk for eye strain and its effects also continues to rise. Increasing use of smart phones, tablets, laptops and desktop PCs may expose the eyes to strain from long, uninterrupted focus on video screens.
According to the American Optometric Association, some people may go beyond general computer eye strain and develop “Computer Vision Syndrome,” a group of eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged computer use. Symptoms include headaches, blurred vision, and even neck and shoulder pain.
As part of March’s Workplace Eye Wellness Month, Prevent Blindness America, the nation’s oldest volunteer eye health and safety group, provides employers with free information on ways to keep the eyes healthy on-the-job.
Eyestrain can be lessened or even prevented by making changes to the computer workspace and by visiting an eye doctor. Here are a few suggestions on how to make the workspace more comfortable:
Place your screen 20 to 26 inches away from your eyes and a little bit below eye level.
Use a document holder placed next to your computer screen. It should be close enough so you don’t have to swing your head back and forth or constantly change your eye focus.
Change your lighting to lower glare and harsh reflections. Glare filters over your computer screen can also help.
Use an adjustable chair. Choose screens that can tilt and swivel. An adjustable keyboard can also be helpful.
In addition, Prevent Blindness America offers the Healthy Eyes Educational Series which is ideal for lunch-and-learn presentations in an office setting. Those interested may download free modules to conduct formal presentations or informal one-on-one sessions. Each module includes a Presentation Guide and corresponding PowerPoint presentation on a variety of eye health topics such as adult eye disorders, eye anatomy, healthy living, low vision and various safety topics. Fact sheets can be downloaded at any time from the Prevent Blindness America website for use as handouts to accompany the presentation.
“We want to help to remind employees and employers of the benefits of taking care of our eyesight,” said Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness America. “By keeping our eyes healthy, we can become more productive and save on healthcare costs!”
For more information on keeping eyes healthy while using computers, please visit preventblindness.org/computers-and-your-eyes. To find out how your company can sign up for the Healthy Eyes Educational Series, please call PBA at (800) 331-2020 or visit preventblindness.org.
About Prevent Blindness America
Founded in 1908, Prevent Blindness America is the nation’s leading volunteer eye health and safety organization dedicated to fighting blindness and saving sight. Focused on promoting a continuum of vision care, Prevent Blindness America touches the lives of millions of people each year through public and professional education, advocacy, certified vision screening and training, community and patient service programs and research. These services are made possible through the generous support of the American public. Together with a network of affiliates and regional offices, Prevent Blindness America is committed to eliminating preventable blindness in America. For more information, or to make a contribution to the sight- saving fund, call 1-800-331-2020. Or, visit us on the Web at preventblindness.org or facebook.com/preventblindness.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health have designated March as National Cataract Awareness Month
Read more: The Sampson Independent – March is National Cataract Awareness Month