Computer Vision Syndrome is an eye condition that occurs due to prolonged use of the computer. Unlike other activities that require the use of our sense of sight, using a computer has different visual demands in terms of the focus requirement. Thus, prolonged computer use can cause this condition which is exhibited through the following symptoms:
• Eye Strain (also called Asthenopia)
• Eye fatigue caused by having to switch from between the keyboard and the screen or a document and the keyboard.
• Difficulty in focusing on the computer monitor for a long time
• Blurred vision, especially if the computer vision syndrome is coupled with presbyopia.
• Headache, especially if the condition comes with presbyopia.
• Eye irritation
• Dry or watery eye
• Itchiness of the eye
In the past, people just stopped using the computer whenever they begin to exhibit signs of computer vision syndrome. After resting the eyes for a couple of hours or even minutes, the eyes feel well-rested and the symptoms associated with the condition go away. In some instances, when the condition is accompanied by dry eyes, eye drops may be resorted to.
With the advances in technology, resting the eyes is not the only remedy available to people experiencing computer vision syndrome. Special glasses have been designed and have been found to be the perfect solution in addressing computer vision syndrome. Here are some useful information about these special eye glasses:
• When you are suffering from this condition, you should try using these special eye glasses called computer glasses. You have to be specific about its name to differentiate it from regular prescription glasses that may either be bifocal glasses, reading glasses or the single vision glasses used by people with myopia. Remember that your regular prescription glasses are not designed for prolonged computer use. Computer glasses are also different from progressive glasses and trifocals.
• You need to use computer glasses that are specially designed for prolonged computer use because when you use the computer, you need your intermediate zone of vision for computer focus. This intermediate zone is farther than your near vision, while it is closer than your distance vision.
• Studies show that computer glasses are effective in fighting computer vision syndrome. In a study with participants wearing either computer glasses or other types of eye glasses, the result revealed that those who wore computer glasses had higher work productivity compared to those who did not.
• Note that since computer glasses are specially designed for prolonged computer use, they might not be able to address your other vision needs.
• You may use a single vision lens with special power to get the largest vision field and the most comfortable computer vision. This type of lens will also help reduce the risk of unnatural posture, blurred vision and eye strain.
• If you have presbyopia and you also exhibit symptoms of computer vision syndrome, you can use occupational progressive lenses or lined trifocals with larger intermediate zone. Note, however, that they cannot be used for driving because they narrow the distance zone.
• Shortly in Australia we are expecting to start prescribing Gunnar lenses – these are specifically design for computer vision eye strain. These yellow tinted lenses are superb in relieving the visual component of computer vision syndrome.
• We also will start prescribing very specialized precision coloured lenses using an diagnostic instrument called a Colorimeter. Approximately 25% of the population is prone to a condition called Visual Stress. This is in addition to computer vision syndrome. They will prove to be a life saver for this sub section of the population.
Stay tuned for more about this. At The Eye Practice we know that eye strain caused by electronic devices has become an epidemic. Call us now on (02) 9290 1899 for a complete assessment.