Stop Your Computer From Hurting Your Eyes

26 September 2016
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Even if you have the perfect vision today, you might want to read this if you stare at a computer screen for more than a few hours every day. Subjecting your eyes to TV, computer screens, phones, tablets and game consoles can adversely affect your vision, your sleep patterns and your general eye health. Read more to find out how to stop the negative affects with the help of Eyesupply. 

Computer screens can affect your eyes in numerous ways:

  • Eye strain and tired eyes
  • Reduced blink rate
  • Dry, irritated and red eyes
  • Blurred and variable vision 

Human beings blink about once every five seconds as a natural way for your body to replenish the tear film that keeps your eyes moist and clean. Blinking moisturizes the eyes by spreading the tear film over the eyes and keeping foreign bodies from entering.

When we look at computer screens, we blink less frequently or not as fully. Studies have shown that we blink five times less when we look at a computer screen. 

If you wear contact lenses, your eyes may suffer even more from dryness and irritation. Studies have found that contact lens wearers suffer more eye discomfort and visual disturbances than non-wearers.

There are other things you can do to decrease your eye irritation in the office:

1. Decrease glare

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The glare or reflection of the sun and other light sources on your computer screen can cause eye strain. To combat glare, you can add a filter to your windows by installing an anti-glare filter like sandblasting or tinting the windows. You can also add an anti-glare filter to your computer screen. Try to decrease outside light as much as possible and if necessary, paint the walls a darker colour with a matt finish. If you wear eyeglasses, you can purchase lenses with an anti-reflective (AR) coating which reduces glare by minimizing the amount of light reflecting off your lenses.

2. Use proper lighting

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Harsh light, whether it's from outside or indoors, can cause eye strain, tearing and irritation. Protect your eyes from solar radiation by reducing outside lighting by closing the blinds or curtains. Fix interior lighting by using lower intensity bulbs in the right spots. If you can, position your computer screen to the side of the window instead of in front or behind it. 

3. Adjust your computer display settings

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It's vitally important to adjust your computer screen's settings to your liking, especially if you are going to stare at it for hours on end. Keep your computer from destroying your eyesight with these easy tips. To set your screen to your comfort level, adjust the brightness of the display, the colour temperature, the contrast and the text size.

  • Brightness: Adjust the brightness of your display to make it the same as the brightness of your workstation – your computer screen should not be a light source.
  • Colour temperature: This refers to the amount of blue light in your display. Blue light is associated with more eye strain than warmer colour lights like orange or yellow. By reducing the blue light emitted in the display, your eyes will be more comfortable for longer. 
  • Contrast and text size: To avoid eye strain, set the text size on your computer to three (3) times the smallest size you can read from your normal position. The best colour combination is black on white although dark-on-light combinations also work well. 

To adjust these settings, you can make the necessary changes in the Control Panel for Windows or in System Preferences for Macs. F.lux is a great application that adjusts your device’s screen temperature according to the hour of the day. Apple have also released a blue light filter in the latest iOS update for iPhones And iPads. Both these systems help to reduce the amount of digital blue light on your eyes every day.

4. Take frequent breaks

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If you focus on your computer screen constantly, your eyes will start to tire out and suffer from focusing fatigue. To reduce strain, take a break every twenty (20) minutes and look at something far into the distance for a few seconds. This exercise reduces the risk of your eyes' focusing ability to fail (a condition called accommodative spasm) after prolonged computer work.

Remember to blink frequently

5. Upgrade your eye gear


Studies have found that silicone hydrogel contact lenses are associated with more comfort in computer users than regular soft contact lenses. If the dry environment of the office irritates your eyes, you might want to switch to a pair of computer eyeglasses.

To find the perfect contact lenses online, contact Eyesupply today! Eyesupply is owned and run by two highly skilled optometrists who are registered with both the Health Professions Council of South Africa and the Board of Healthcare Funders of South Africa. Eyesupply experts are available via phone at +27 (10) 590 3278 or email at




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