Staring at a screen too long

With meetings, #bellringing, family gatherings, talks, plus the usual social media, emails, work etc, I find that I’m currently spending roughly 12 hours a day staring at a screen.  Small wonder my eyes are dried out at the end of the evening.

I work a 9.5hr day Monday to Friday and most evenings am either on a Zoom meeting, or a virtual #bellringing session.  On my non-working day I have, one, sometimes two virtual #bellringing sessions and more often than not a meeting in the afternoon on Zoom as well.  Then every other Sunday there’s the family Skype gathering.

Apparently, there’s a name for it now ‘digital eye strain’ or ‘computer vision syndrome’.  However, help it at hand with some top tips on how to reduce eye strain from All About Vision:

  1. Get an eye test and tell the optician how much time you spend on the computer or devices.
  2. Reduce excessive bright light.  Close blinds or curtains, use lower intensity light bulbs, and position the computer so that windows are at the side, not in front or behind.
  3. Consider an anti-glare screen for your monitor and have a more muted coloured wall to reduce glare from reflective surfaces.
  4. Upgrade your monitor with a flat-panel LED screen in anti-reflective surface.
  5. Adjust the brightness, text size and contrast, colour temperature or your screen.
  6. Blink.  When staring at a screen, people blink less frequently — only about one-third as often as they normally do. Blinking moistens your eyes to prevent dryness and irritation.
  7. Exercise your eyes by frequently looking away from the screen at a distant object and focus on it for at least 20 seconds.
  8. Take frequent breaks to help reduce neck, shoulder and back pain.  Get up and move around for 10 minutes every hour.
  9. Modify your workstation.  Check your posture and ensure that your chair is the right height with your feet comfortably on the floor.  Make sure that your screen is 20-24 inches away from your eyes with the centre of the screen 10-15 degrees below your eye level.
  10. Consider computer glasses.  Customised glasses which photochromic lenses.

I am conscious that my eyes are tired at the end of the day, and that I do probably need to get up and move about a bit more.

Maybe I will also try a digital detox day as well.  A day without any screen time at all.  Hmmmm!


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