• Specsavers Ópticas shares top tips for combatting eye fatigue in an increased screen use time

Daily routines for people in Spain have changed dramatically in response to the outbreak of the Coronavirus (Covid-19). With more people working from home, it is more important than ever to look after your vision and try to reduce eye strain.

Whether you are working on a laptop or keeping up-to-date with the latest news on your mobile phone, your daily screen time will no doubt see a dramatic increase over the coming weeks.

While eye strain is not usually serious and tends to go once you rest your eyes, symptoms to look out for include eye discomfort, headaches, sore, tired, burning or itchy eyes, difficulty focusing, watery eyes, dry eyes, blurred or double vision, and increased sensitivity to light.

While Specsavers Ópticas understands screen time for work is largely unavoidable, we are here to offer professional advice on ways to manage computer strain and ensure a healthy working and living environment in the midst of this current situation.

Optometrist and store director Amrik Sappal, has given the following tips for anyone working at home:

  • Rest your eyes – Take regular breaks from looking at your screen. Take a minute to stare out a window as looking into a distance relaxes the focusing muscle inside the eye, which in turn reduces eye fatigue
  • Use adequate lighting – Poor lighting, including glare and reflections can result in eye fatigue. Use blinds to reduce brightness of excessive sunlight, avoid sitting under big overhead or fluorescent lights, and where possible, use floor lamps instead.
  • Reduce glare – Reflections on your computer screen can cause glare. Try reducing glare and reflections on your computer screen by attaching an anti-glare screen to your monitor – a slightly less drastic measure than changing up your wall colour to a dark, matt shade. Any glasses wearers out there should use lenses with an anti-reflective coating to reduce glare.
  • Adjust your monitor’s settings – Ensure the brightness of your screen is the same as the surroundings and adjust font sizes and your monitor’s colour temperature to alter the number of blue colours on your screen. Blue light is short-wavelength visible light that is associated with more eye strain than longer-wavelength hues, such as orange and red
  • Modify your workstation – Assess your workstation. Start with ensuring your workstation and chair are of an appropriate height to one another. Adjust the monitor height so that the top of the screen is at—or slightly below—eye level. Your eyes should look slightly downward when viewing the middle of the screen. Your computer screen should be 20 to 24 inches from your eyes and the centre of the screen should be 10 to 15 degrees below your eye line
  • Upgrade your display – Swap out an old CRT (cathode ray tube) monitor for an LCD screen. LCD screens are much easier on the eyes, do not flicker in the way CRT does and usually have anti-reflective surface.

Sappal also suggests that any glasses and contact lens wearers should ensure that they wear lenses specifically for computers.

He says: ‘Wearing prescription glasses gives the greatest comfort to wearers while using a computer. I would encourage contact lens wearers to consider wearing glasses while they work from home, especially at a time when their screen time might be higher, whether it’s a combination of increased workload, keeping up to date with ongoing events on your phone or laptop, or playing with kids on a device using a screen.

Contact lenses can become dry and uncomfortable during sustained screen work.’

Specsavers Ópticas has temporarily closed its stores, to support the national and global efforts to stop the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). During this time, it will continue to provide urgent support and advice to the public over the phone.

Specsavers Ópticas would like to thank customers for their patience and understanding at this difficult time and hopes to be back open as soon as it is safe to do so.

There is a wealth of information and advice on the Specsavers Ópticas website, www.specsavers.es. Here you can also find the contact details for all the stores.

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