Endurance Test for Your Eyes
More and more people have to look at a computer screen for longer periods of time on a daily basis, both at work and at home. Be it surfing on the internet or playing PC games, the eyes are heavily strained. Staring at a computer screen for hours dries out your eyes. We have tips to avoid the “office eye syndrome”.
In order to prevent unhealthy side effects of long computer sessions such as irritated eyes, neck tension, backaches and headaches, three factors are crucial: The use of a high-quality computer screen, its correct positioning with regard to ergonomics and light and, above all, good eyesight, which has been corrected with spectacles or contact lenses if required.
One in five patients who consult an eye specialist in Germany complains about itching, stinging and extremely light-sensitive eyes. The main reasons are that the eyes do not have enough tear fluid or that the composition of the tear fluid is unbalanced. This condition is called “dry eye syndrome” or “office eye syndrome”. The symptoms are not only irritating but the natural defence against germs like, for instance, the herpes virus, can be reduced. If there is insufficient tear fluid, the corneal can be roughened up in extreme cases, which is then likely to lead to vision defects.
The “Office Eye Syndrome”
There are many causes of dry eyes. Changed environmental and work conditions increasingly play a part. Working at a computer screen (especially in combination with misalignments of the eyes) and dry air in air-conditioned rooms put a strain on the eyes. When working at a computer, for instance, the user’s eyelid movement is reduced and the tear fluid is not renewed in the required intervals. In the United States, this complaint is therefore called “office eye syndrome”. Over the past few years, the number of patients has soared. Surveys in Canada, Japan and in the Federal State of Maryland have shown that already 15 to 25 percent of the population suffer from dry eye symptoms.
The air in offices is often too dry. This results in a further drying out of the eyes. You can provide remedy by humidifying the air in your office. A humidity of about 50 percent is ideal. Simply place a few bowls with water around your office. Do not expose your eyes to direct air flow such as ventilation fans for air conditioners. Keep your office smoke-free and dust your desk from time to time.
Tips for Relaxation
- Treat your eyes to regular breaks. Take a brief look out the window every ten minutes and deliberately blink time and again. This provides relaxation. Or let your eyes wander up and down and from one side to the other. In doing so, pay attention to the outline of the objects at the periphery of your field of vision.
- Have a good yawn from time to time. Yawning causes your face muscles to relax and moistens your eyes. If it actually makes you shed a few tears, this is even better. Sometimes artificial tears help. We offer new preparations that contain all components of natural tear fluid. We are happy to advise you.
- Cover your eyes with your hands several times every day. It is important that you do not exert pressure on your eyes. Then imagine lovely things, for instance a landscape or colourful objects. Then slowly remove your hands from your eyes. Darkness and warmth are good for them.
- Drink enough. If there is no limit imposed by a disease, at least two litres a day.
- Have your sight tested regularly. Glasses that are too weak or not fitted correctly encourage dry eyes.