Protecting your eyes in the office is one of the most important things you can do. You may think you’re safe because you’re not working in a factory or warehouse where danger is apparent. But, working in an office presents its own set of challenges. Sure, you might not be in immediate physical harm, but you are susceptible to vision impairments due to your work environment.
What many people are unaware of is that working in an office can harm your eyes. Some people may laugh at this being a serious problem, but it is. Impaired vision at work can cause you to be less productive. Plus, it will start to affect your everyday life.
Here are some tips on how to protect your eyes while in the office:
Don’t “overwear” or mishandle your contact lenses.
It is very important to follow the proper instruction of contact lens use. Misappropriate length of wear and inadequate cleaning of lens can lead to a variety of eye infections, including some that might even cause blindness. Your eyes will get drier the longer you wear your contact lenses. If you are expecting a long day at work, do remember to bring along a pair of glasses and wear it in place of your contact lens when your eyes gets too dry in the later part of the day.
Work in good lighting.
Office work is often visually demanding and has always required good lighting for maximum comfort and productivity. Try to angle your monitor away from light sources and windows, and make sure there is no light reflecting off the monitor, as this can also cause visual disturbances.
Adjust the brightness and contrast of your computer screen.
Adjust the display settings on your computer so the brightness of the screen is about the same as your work environment. Tweak the brightness and contrast according to your preference to provide the best working condition.
Take frequent breaks in between work to help rest the eyes.
Your eyes are in desperate need of a break! Give it to them! If you want to give your eyes an effective break, use the 10-10-10 rule.
Every 10 minutes, look at something 10 feet away for 10 seconds. Give them a break right now. Go on, we’ll wait.
Done? Ok, great! How do your eyes feel? Did you notice how they had a chance to relax and defocus? That’s what the 10-10-10 rule is all about.
Extended periods of extreme focus can cause your eyes to fatigue and may cause blurred vision. You may even experience temporary nearsightedness. When you do too much “close work” (work that is close to the eye), your eyes become trained in seeing well up close but begin to lose their distance vision.
Increase font size of your computer screen to reduce eye strain.
Just remember that the smaller the screen means the bigger the eye health issue. Improve your reading experience by increasing the size of the font; this is helpful if you have to read long documents or spend hours entering data or editing on your computer.
Ensure your glasses/lens prescription is appropriate for close computer work.
You can also get anti-reflective coating on your glasses to prevent glare and lens reflection. Alternatively, depending on the amount of time you work at the computer, the kind of vision correction needed and your personal preferences, you may want to get a separate pair of glasses specifically for computer work.
It seems simple enough, but we often forget to blink, especially when staring at a computer screen! Consciously make an effort to blink often while working. This will provide your eyes with much needed nutrients and moisture. If dryness persists, talk to your optometrist about lubricating eye drops!
Adjust Your Workspace
The number one culprit when it comes to vision problems in office workers is your computer. Computers are essential in office work. You can spend half a day just responding to emails! Imagine what that will do to your eyes! So how can you make sure you’re protecting your eyes in the office when you use your computer for all of your tasks?
Computers are not evil. They just weren’t designed to be stared at for hours on end. There’s an easy fix to counter the effects of your computer.
First, adjust your computer monitor’s position. For a more comfortable workday in front of your computer, place it at arm’s length away. Then make sure that your direct eye line falls somewhere two to three inches below the top of the monitor. You can do this by either adjusting the actual monitor or your chair.
You will also want to tilt your screen slightly upward to get rid of any glare. Glare is not only irritating, it interferes with what’s on the screen. It can also strain your eyes as they have to force themselves to focus on the contents on the screen and to ignore the glare.
Have periodic and thorough eye care examinations by an optometrist as part of a routine primary care.
Your visual abilities in everyday life influence how little or how much prolonged computer use will affect you. Conditions like farsightedness, astigmatism, and poor eye focusing can make computer eyestrain much worse. The eye doctor can prescribe corrective lenses to remedy your eyesight and reduce how badly the computer affects your vision. He can also recommend different methods of protecting your eyes while you use the computer.
- Tips for Protecting Your Eyes in the Office – by LEE Sao Bing SEPTEMBER 8, 2013
- Tips to Protect Your Eyes If You Work in an Office by Tyler Sorensen January 18, 2021
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At Golden Eye Optometry, we view good vision care as front line protection at every age. A routine eye exam can detect more than poor vision. It can shed early light on glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataracts and diabetes.