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Computer Vision Syndrome

Computer Vision Syndrome describes eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged computer, tablet, e-reader and cell phone use. Most commonly: Dry Eyes, Tired/Sore Eyes, Watery Eyes, Intermittent Blurry Vision, eye strain and headaches. Below is the most common treatments and an informative speech given by Dr. Shah at Toastmasters of Hanford.
digital eye picture with computer background
Treatment Options:

1. 20/20/20 Rule- Every 20 minutes take a 20 second break by looking 20 feet away

2. Reduction of Glare- Glasses with Blue Light Blocking Coatings or changing lighting at work environment

3. Use prescription glasses for reading- if needed

4. Use eye drops while working on computer


Drs. Mayer, Shah and Yost will go over these and other specific treatment options based on your symptoms!

Speech Title: Computer Vision Syndrome.

Everyone do me a favor and look at the person to your left, now look at the person to your right. One of your neighbors or more likely both have experienced symptoms due to Computer Vision Syndrome. In fact, research shows around 70 to 90 percent of people have suffered from Computer Vision Syndrome.

Computer Vision Syndrome describes eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged computer, tablet, e-reader and cell phone use. The level of discomfort appears to increase with the amount of digital screen use. How many hours do you think the average American spends on digital devices? Any guesses? According to CNN, the average American spends 10 hours of screen time a day. That’s a staggering number! That is more than half of your waking hours

As a result, many of you are wondering what happens when you stare at digital devices for that many hours, and what Computer Vision Syndrome consists of. The most common symptoms of CVS include: eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, watery eyes, and neck and shoulder pain. The headaches and eyestrain is caused from 3 main things. One is the overuse of the focusing system- which works very hard to constantly keep things clear upclose. Second, is overuse of the eye muscles that are required to make fine eye movements while reading and holding an inward convergence posture. Just like muscles elsewhere in the body if they are engaged for too long they will fatigue. Imagine holding your squat for an hour, how do you think your thighs will handle it? And that's a larger muscle group in action. Third is the blue light coming off LED backed devices, such as computers, phones and tablets that cause glare and subsequent eyestrain. The eyes can also become dry and bothersome because it has been proven that people blink less when looking at digital devices. This decreased blink rate causes the tears to evaporate quicker and produces discomfort and excess lacrimation.

Our eyes were never meant to view screens for 10 plus hours, or even more than 2 hours for that matter. Many of the visual symptoms experienced by users are only temporary and will decline after stopping computer work or use of the digital devices. However, some individuals may experience blurred distance vision, even after stopping work at a computer. If nothing is done to address the cause of the problem, the symptoms will continue to recur and perhaps worsen with future digital screen use.

Alright, so easy fix right? Throw away your iphone! And Don’t go to work! If only...There are several ways to help reduce CVS without reducing screen time. However, the easiest and best is to reduce your screen time as much as possible. Other treatments include, reducing glare by making changes to your workplace lighting, wearing glasses with anti-glare treatments specifically meant for computers, using artificial tear drops while working on digital devices, or following the 20/20/20 rule. The 20/20/20 rule says that every 20 minutes take a 20 second break by looking 20 feet away, this allows your eyes to defocus and relax. That is a rule that works great for all people, however, it is always best to have an eyecare professional tailor a plan for any individual that suffers from this condition.
Now if any of you suffer from this syndrome you know what to do, and better yet you know you are not alone, you are part of the 70-90 % percent of the population.