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What is digital eye strain?

Office workers in Kansas don't necessarily view their workplaces as hazardous. However, digital eye strain does pose a serious risk to workers' vision when spending hours a day staring at a computer screen. The American Optometric Association explains why digital eye strain occurs and why taking breaks from your computer screen is so beneficial. 

The act of working from a computer screen is quite different than dealing with print on a page. For instance, the angle which you're viewing the screen might make your eyes work harder. The text might also appear blurry or undefined, and glare from the screen can also cause discomfort and other bothersome symptoms. Keep in mind that on average, workers in America spend as much as seven hours a day looking at some type of digital screen. This leads to numerous visual disturbances, among other issues.

Digital eye strain is identified by headache, blurriness, and dry eyes. People also experience pain in the shoulders and neck, which is usually caused by holding your head at an odd angle. If you have an existing vision issue, such as a refractive error, you might be more affected by digital eye strain. In this case, it's important to have your prescription for eyeglasses or contacts updated regularly to prevent ill-effects. 

Taking frequent breaks is another way to combat the symptoms of digital eye strain. Eye care specialists recommend a 15-minute break after every 2 hours of work. You can also employ the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break to look at something 20 feet away. Eye strain can also be eased by your working environment. Make sure your monitor is positioned about an arm's length away from your eyes and try to reduce bright lights from above and behind you. If you need assistance creating a more favorable working environment, ask your manager for assistance. 

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