Work “Smarter” for Healthy Eyes (Even Behind a Desk)
A lot is said, and rightly, about workplace eye safety for jobs involving hazardous chemicals, heavy equipment and small, flying particles, but people don’t really talk about eye safety in Cubeville. Make no mistake, though, it’s just as easy to harm your eyes working behind a desk as it is a more industrial atmosphere. With more and more people spending more and more hours sitting behind a desk, staring at a computer screen, here are a few tips to keep your eyes in good shape at the office:
- Your overhead lighting should be no brighter than your screen. Excessive lighting can cause eye strain.
- Keep your eye glasses prescription up-to-date. Wearing out-dated lenses isn’t going to do you any favors. You could even ask one of our four optometrists about computer glasses!
- Sitting too close to the screen can cause eye fatigue and blurred vision.
- Old monitors and low-resolution screens can also make your eyes tired. Ask to upgrade to a high-resolution, flat-panel display. After all, it’s for your health!
- Make sure your mouse isn’t too far away. You may be wondering how the length of your arms is related to your eyes, but having your mouse too far out of reach will cause you to lean closer to your screen, increasing eye strain.
- How’s your chair? Sitting in an ergonomic chair that supports your back in an upright sitting position a comfortable distance from your screen will help decrease eye strain.
- Don’t be a turtle. Or do, if you want, but don’t sit like a turtle. “Turtling” is sitting with your back rounded, head tilted back and chin jutting forward. It does allow you to get closer to your screen, but it’s bad for your back, and if you can’t see your screen without sitting like a turtle, you need to talk to your eye doctor.
- Don’t forget to blink. It seems involuntary, but when viewing a computer it’s easy for your body to forget to blink. Try to do it frequently so your eyes don’t get dried out and itchy.
- Finally, follow the 20x20x20x20 rule: Eyes 20 inches from your screen, and take a 20 second break every 20 minutes to look at something 20 feet away from your screen. You should try it now…we’ll wait.