Can staring at a computer screen all day long damage your eyesight?

Does your job require you to sit at a desk staring at a computer for eight hours at a time and at the end of the day you find yourself suffering from a headache and discomfort in your eyes? The truth is, the screen you are staring at for a long period of time isn’t exactly damaging your eyes; however, the muscles in your eyeballs grow tired and dry out from focusing on one fixed point for too long. Research has also shown that when people stare at a computer, cellphone or tablet, they tend to blink less. This can cause a burning or drying sensation that causes discomfort and blur your vision.

Although the discomfort may only last for a few hours, the real question is ‘What are the long term effects?’  Can staring at a computer screen all day long really damage your eyesight? Professionals say that in the long run, yes, it is possible. The reason for this is because bright lights (like a computer screen) can cause damage to our retinas reversibly, which potentially leads to vision problems.

So how can you avoid damaging your eyesight despite having to stare at a computer screen all day? Here are a few suggestions…

  • Proper eyewear is essential. Optometrist can fit you for glasses made specifically for the computer screen, which will inevitably make it easier on your eyes.
  • Dim the computer screen. Try to dim the lighting on your screen, moving the computer away so that you are hunched over it trying to read the print and enlarge the font.
  • Eye drops. Eye drops can help lubricate your eyes so that they do not become dry and cause a burning sensation.

Stop by Q Optical located on Newbury Street in Boston for an eye exam or some information on eyewear that will fit your personality and style!

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