Eye health is something a lot of us take for granted because we just assume that we will always have it. But once our vision starts to fade, whether it is due to age or injury, we realize what a valuable tool seeing is and how much we rely on it.
National Save Your Vision Month by the American Optometric Association is a campaign that raises awareness of the importance for Americans to have regular eye exams and some tips on how to maintain eye health.
In today’s world, everything we know and do is based around someone using the computer. Americans spend many, many hours a week on computers and we often do not think about how this affects our eye health.
According to the American Optometric Association, studies have proven that eyestrain and other eye health problems can occur in as many as 9 out of 10 people who use computers at work.
The most common symptoms of vision impairment include blurred vision, excessively watery eyes, eyestrain, double vision, excessive blinking, squinting, headaches, neck pain, & shoulder pain. Some other symptoms may include red, irritated eyes, tired, aching, heavy eyelids, muscle spasms of the eyes or eyelids, and problems focusing.
Eyestrain symptoms can be avoided by taking the proper precautions: resting your eyes, changing your work environment, and wearing the correct type of glasses.
If you spend a lot of time on the computer, here are some tips to help save your eye health:
Adjust monitor brightness. Your monitor should not be too bright or too dim. The AOA recommends adjusting your computer monitor to a level that is comfortable for your eyes.
Take frequent breaks. Give your eyes a rest by taking frequent breaks from the computer. The breaks only need to be for a minute or two, but during that time focus your eyes a distant object. This will help to refresh your vision.
Minimize reflected glare. With window shades, curtains, and dimmer switches on lights you can minimize the glare that can cause eyestrain.
Adjust contrast. Adjust the contrast on your computer between the characters on the monitor and the background. This will help your eyes focus easily on the letters and they will be easier to read.
Position your monitor properly. The AOA recommends that your monitor should be located 16 – 30 inches from your eyes. The actual distance will depend on how large your screen is and what your vision is like. The AOA also suggests that the top of the monitor should be slightly below eye level.
During National Save Your Vision Month, why not go and have your eyes checked? This month is a great reminder to take care of your eye health.