Eye Matters
February 22, 2011
Teenagers and kids – This is for you Pt:2

Dear Readers,

Last week, we discussed the complications that can arise from the excessive use of computer monitors and TVs for games and other purposes. Today, I have put together 10 things you can do to protect your eyes from computer strain.{{more}}

1. The Screen- It is important that your screen is not at an angle and that you always sit facing the screen directly, so that both your eyes are equally stimulated. Use antiglare screens and modern screens that offer greater clarity and sharper details.

2. Every 20 minutes or so, look away from the screen. Look into the distance. If you can see mountains or the sea horizon, that is even better. Otherwise, just look at the furthest point available. This allows you to shift from near to distant focus and by doing so, relaxes the muscles of your eyes. This can prevent a condition called computer vision syndrome.

3. The distance you sit from your screen is also very important. If you are playing games or working on a computer, sit at about 20 to 26 inches away from the screen. If you use a TV to play games then sit at least six feet away.

4. Make sure your monitor or TV Screen has an antiglare filter, otherwise adjust the settings on the screen to reduce glare to a moderately comfortable level.

5. When you look away from the screen once in a while, make it a habit to blink your eyes frequently. This lubricates and prevents dryness especially in air conditioned surroundings.

6. If symptoms such as gritty eyes and itching occur while playing, then seek an eye doctor to prescribe eye drops to keep your eyes moist.

7. Soothe your eyes by rubbing the palm of your hands together for a while to generate heat. Place your warm palms on your eyes for a few minutes. Cold compresses work well too and alternating between the two is even better.

8. Research suggests that looking outside at greenery such as bushes, trees and green grass can be very soothing to the eyes. Practise glancing ever so often at the greenery around you.

9. Simple eye exercises such as rolling your eyes, shifting your eyes from right to left, focusing on your nose and then shifting your focus to the area around your eyebrows are very relaxing.

10. Make sure your vision is adequate. Check your eye doctor frequently and find out if you require “computer glasses” to see well and to prevent eye strain. Removing your contact lenses when using the computer is helpful as it prevents dryness. Try using glasses instead.

Practice these 10 tips and you will find that you can stay longer on the computer without feeling tired or irritable and without straining your eyes.

Have a great week.

Dr Kenneth Onu is a resident Consultant Ophthalmologist at the Beachmont Eye Institute/Eyes R Us Send questions to: Beachmont@gmail.com

Tel: 784 456-1210