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Computer Vision Syndrome

Computer Vision Syndrome



It is a term given to a condition when the eyes feel fatigued & tired as a result of working on the computers for a long period of time without breaks.

The human eyes are designed to be in a relaxed state when the eyes are used for distant vision. As working on the computers involves the use of near vision for a prolonged period of time the eyes tend to get fatigued due to the strain & this can manifest as

Over a period of time, excessive computer use can have cumulative negative effects on the user including eye focusing disorders and poor eye co-ordination. In addition, constant working from a set position can cause neck & shoulder stiffness, as well as stress headaches. This entire symptom complex is known as computer vision syndrome. If you spend more than two hours a day on the computer you are at risk of developing CVS & should take measures to prevent it.

  • Eye strain & eye-ache
  • Blurred vision
  • Headaches
  • Red, dry or burning eyes.
  • Increase in near - sightedness
  • Change in colour perception
  • Slow refocusing
  • Excessive fatique
  • Nech, shoulder & back pain
  • Occassionally double vision
  • Causes of the above include a) reduced average blinking b) extending short distance focusing c) poor lighting d) poor posture


It should be at least 25 inches & preferably more.

The top of the monitor should be slightly farther from the eye than the bottom of the monitor

Use dark letters on a light background i.e black characters on a white background are easiest for the eyes.Also screen brightness should be the same as the brightness of other objects in the room . Adjust screen brightness & contrast properly.

Use an anti-glare/anti- reflection screen over the monitor or have an anti reflection coating put on the spectacles to cut of excessive reflection.

Ensure that the viewing angle of the monitor is between 15 & 50 degrees below horizontal eye level i.e. keep the computer scree 4 to 9 inches below eye level

Have ceiling suspended indirect lighting. It is important that lighting is evenly distributed & that there are no bright lights in your field of vision. Do not have your computer screen facing a window. Use blinds ,shades or curtains to control outside light& reflection . Also control the glare emitting from overhead lights.

Use a chair with arm rests.Note that the slight flexion (head tilt posture) causes less fatigue than head erect posture.Also keep a straight upper back with only a slight roundedness & hollow in the low back.

Avoid direct flow or blast of air from A.c or fan on your eyes. Also avoid low humidity or fumes as all these conditions aggravate dry eyes

Do not stare at the monitor continuously.Take short visual breaks every 20-30 mins by looking away from the monitor,specifically at a distant object or close your eyes for a minute . Also frequent blinking is necessary as this avoids strain on your eyes.

Blink the eyes a few times. Close your eyes & message them behind your closed eyelids once clockwise & once anticlockwise.Take a deep breath& then open your eyes.

Use of tear substitutes maybe required to moisturize the eyes in cases of dry eyes but it is better to consult an opthalmalogist to find out the exact cause before starting any self medication.

Last, but not the least have a good quality monitor-Poor computer screens are a hazard to the eyes. Set the resolution High. Low resolution, low pixel numbers & high contrast colors can put an extra