Did you know that March is Workplace Eye Wellness Month? If you’re like me, you more than likely had no idea there was a health awareness month for such a thing. I quickly browsed over this topic, but found myself coming back to it when I began to think about what it meant. Most think that the only way to damage your eyes would be working in a hazardous work environment, such as construction. However, believe it or not, there are many risks for individuals who also work in an office. Did you know that the most common eye problem is computer vision syndrome? I find myself staring at my computer screen for hours without breaks which does leave my eyes feeling irritated and fatigued. Other symptoms of computer vision syndrome can even leave you with headaches, inattentiveness, neck pain, and back strain. If you work in this type of environment, be sure to use the following steps to prevent these symptoms from occurring:
- 20-20-20 Rule
- Every 20 minutes be sure to direct your eyes away to something other than your computer screen. Ideally, this should be around 20 feet away. Do not take this opportunity to check your phone, as this is the same concept as looking at your computer. Better yet, get up and move around for a minute or two and completely remove yourself from your desk area to help reset.
- This step might sound silly; however, this is a natural human process that many people may not consciously think about. Blinking keeps your eyes from drying out.
- Positioning your Monitor
- Your computer monitor should be at least 20 inches from your eyes. Also be sure that the screen is large enough and is set at the right brightness and contrast.
- Stay Hydrated
- Be sure you are staying hydrated throughout the day, especially if your work environment tends to be dry.
- Schedule regular eye exams
- Regular eye appointments with a licensed ophthalmologist are essential in expressing any concerns you may have about your vision. Consult your vision insurance policy for the frequency of appointments it allows per year.