You have seen our posts and blogs before about the risks that blue light poses to vision. In our current day it is common for us to be looking at a screen for a significant amount of time every day. Most jobs require computer work, we watch tv, use tablets and all of us are walking around with a small screen in our pocket all day.
The threat of blue light is a newer issue that has come to light in the last 20 years and the effects are still being studied. Currently the average American worker spends seven hours a day on the computer. The main problem is referred to as Computer Vision Syndrome.
What is Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)
You may also hear it referred to as digital eye strain. Both names are referring to a group of eye and vision related problems that can result from prolonged screen time.
When reading or working on a computer screen, your eyes are working harder than usual. Uncorrected vision problems can also worsen CVS if left untreated. In most cases the symptoms of CVS occur because the visual demands of the task exceed the visual abilities of the individual performing them.
There are many symptoms that could indicate you are suffering from CVS such as:
- Dry Eyes
- Blurred Vision
- Neck and Shoulder Pain
People who are spending 2 or more hours on a computer or using a digital screen each day are highest risk for developing these types of symptoms. Many of the symptoms are temporary and do decline after they stop looking at a screen. In some severe cases though, some people can experience blurred distance vision even after stopping their screen time. If nothing is done to address the cause of the problem the symptoms can get worse.
How to Diagnose It
A comprehensive eye exam is the best way to determine if you are suffering from CVS. Like we mentioned, some vision problems can worsen CVS symptoms if left untreated. These vision impairments include:
Your eye doctor will be able to determine if you are suffering from any of the above and will assess the amount of time you are using a computer screen and all the symptoms you have been suffering from.
How to Treat CVS
There are many different ways to solve CVS and your eye doctor will help you to determine what course of action is best for you.
In some cases, eye glasses or contact lenses can be prescribed to help protect your eyes from the blue light that is emitted from electronic screens. Of course, if it is determined you need vision correction that will be offered too.
The way in which you view the computer can also be a factor in helping with symptoms of CVS. It is helpful to have the computer screen slightly lower than your normal view.
What sets us apart?
At TriCounty Eye Associates, we offer Neurolens which are an enhancement on the old blue light blocking lenses. These lenses are specially made to help with headaches, eye strain and eye misalignment.
If you think you could be suffering from symptoms of CVS, make sure to mention it at your next appointment!