Staring at a monitor all day can have some lasting effects on your eyes. Over-exerting your eyes for an extended period of time can result in pain and tension, frequent headaches, sensitivity to light, as well as double and blurred vision. And while eyestrain doesn’t often lead to permanent damage, it can impact your productivity.
Fortunately, there are some preventative measures that you can take to avoid eyestrain:
Position the Monitor Correctly
The best position for your monitor is just slightly below eye level. At this height, your eyes don’t have to open as much to read the screen. This helps keep them naturally lubricated which can help to prevent dry eyes and redness from occurring. Also, if you find that you have to move closer to your monitor to read the regular-sized text, then your computer screen is likely too far back. Move it forward so that you don’t need to squint or move your head closer to the screen. It’s recommended that you keep your monitor between 20 and 40 inches in front of you. If that doesn’t help, adjust your resolution to the highest setting or talk to your doctor about getting eyeglasses.
Move the Mouse and Keyboard Closer
If you’re leaning in too far, you can actually tire out your eye muscles really quickly, which can make it hard to focus. Having the mouse and keyboard closer will prevent you from needing to lean in closer to the screen.
Position Your Desk to Reduce Glare
Does the screen brightness irritate your eyes? If so, check your computer’s settings to ensure that your desktop and color scheme are balanced and have enough contrast. If that doesn’t help, then it’s time to adjust the lighting in the room. If you’re experiencing glare, check to see where the light is coming from. If the light comes directly behind you, it will create a glare on your screen which can make it difficult to read. Try to move your monitor or desk to a position where the light shines onto your computer at a softer angle. Where there are overhead lights, move your desk so that you’re not sitting directly under the fluorescent lights. And if you’re facing a window, consider repositioning your desk, so the window is not directly in front of you, or use light sheers on your windows.
Get an Adjustable Desk Lamp
Switching between your monitor and paper documents can put a real strain on your eyes. You can help relieve that strain by adding a lamp or other light source on your desk that you can adjust. This can allow you to position the light as you need to reduce glare and eye strain.
Keep Decorations to a Minimum
All those photos, toys, and motivational pictures in your workspace can actually do more harm than good. Not only can they distract you, but they can cause your eyes to constantly refocus and adjust. So keep the decorations to a minimum and store only what you need on your desk.