Computer Vision Specialist

Your Two Eyes Optometry

Optometry located in Berkeley, CA

You may be so used to looking at a screen that you don’t realize how it’s affecting you. However, make no mistake — computer vision syndrome, eye strain and other symptoms that result from extended digital screen use is a real, common, and thankfully treatable condition. The team of board-certified optometrists at Your Two Eyes Optometry in Berkeley, California, can help you manage computer vision through lifestyle changes, vision therapy, and corrective lenses. Call the office or schedule an appointment online today.

Computer Vision Q & A

What is computer vision syndrome?

Computer vision syndrome, or digital eye strain, refers to a collection of eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged digital screen use, including laptops, tablets, e-readers, and smartphones. These problems include:

  • Eye strain
  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Dry eyes
  • Neck and shoulder pain

These symptoms are usually temporary. Though they get worse the longer you continue looking at a screen, they usually fade once you stop. However, some people may experience lingering effects even after they stop using the device, including difficulty seeing things that are far away.

Computer vision syndrome may be uncomfortable and concerning, but thankfully it doesn’t mean you’ve damaged your eyes. Regardless, the symptoms are a sign that you need to address the underlying cause. Otherwise, your symptoms are likely to come back whenever you look at a screen and may get worse with time.

What causes computer vision syndrome?

Computer vision syndrome, like carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), is a problem that most commonly affects people who work in offices. These jobs often entail spending many uninterrupted hours looking at a computer screen.

Your eyes have to work harder to read a digital screen than a printed page. There are several reasons for this: the level of contrast between text and background is low, the text itself is not as sharp or clear, and glare or reflections on the screen can make the text that much harder to read.

Looking at a screen also means you may be reading at a less than ideal angle and distance. Think about the position of your monitor, desk, and chair in your office, and then compare it to the way you’d look at a book or newspaper. There’s likely a notable difference.

These factors mean your eyes have to work extra hard to look at a screen, leading to eye strain and other symptoms with extended use. Computer vision syndrome may be worse if you don’t have the right corrective lens prescription or have age-related difficulties with focusing, known as presbyopia.

How is computer vision syndrome treated?

Computer vision syndrome is usually treatable through a few simple changes to your habits and workspace, including:

  • Discuss with your optometrist the best positioning of your monitors for comfortable viewing
  • Regular breaks from your use of screens during the day
  • Managing your dry eye symptoms successfully
  • Adjusting the settings on your screen and the ambient lighting to improve comfort, reduce glare, and decrease blue light reaching your retina

Your optometrist may also recommend testing your vision to ensure you have the correct prescription. You may benefit from special lenses to wear when you work on a computer.

You don’t have to live with computer vision syndrome. Schedule an appointment at Your Two Eyes Optometry online or by phone today.