Combatting computer-induced eye strain
Last updated 2/14/2008 at Noon
Too much time spent staring at a computer screen could potentially be very damaging to a person’s vision, regardless of the person’s age. To combat eye strain that might result from hours looking at a monitor, computer users can consider the following tips.
• Keeping their distance. Whether they use a desktop or laptop computer, a distance of at least 20 inches should be maintained from the monitor.
• The need for speed. A slower computer forces people to spend more time staring at the screen. A faster computer will save time and do less damage to a person’s vision.
• Keep the screen clean. A dirty computer screen forces users to strain to see what they're trying to read. Keep the screen clean by giving it a daily dusting and cleaning any smudges or finger marks.
• Catch up with the times. Older monitors don't boast the resolution of LCD monitors that have lower emissions and provide greater focus across the entire monitor. Most new computers are available with LCD monitors that, when compared to the damage they might cause to vision, are well worth the extra money.
• Sit up straight. Slouching or leaning forwards or backwards while sitting at a computer puts one’s eyes at a disadvantage, forcing them to strain to see the screen. Sit up straight when using the computer and, when using a laptop, don't keep the computer at an odd angle that makes it more difficult to see the screen.
• Adjust brightness and contrast. Try to keep brightness and contrast levels as even as possible. Having a high brightness level and a low contrast level can prove harmful to vision. Many computers have these levels already set at the appropriate levels so buyers might not need to adjust anything on a new computer.
• Keep things light. Reading a computer screen in a dark room makes it more difficult for your eyes to focus. Keep any room in which a computer is used well-lit and don't rely solely on the light coming from the computer, regardless of how bright it might seem.