I work at a computer all day. I find that my eyes are so tired at the end of the day, often accompanied by dry eyes and headaches. Why is this? What can I do about it?

In our modernized tech world that we live in, most of us find ourselves working many hours each day on a computer, laptop, tablet or smart phone or possibly a combination of all these. Many of us find that by the end of the day, our eyes are tired and fatigued from the numerous hours we sit and work on these devices, which is known as computer vision syndrome or computer eye strain. One reason this may be the case is that we tend not to blink as often while staring at the monitor/phone, creating abnormally dry eyes. A normal blink rate should be about every 15 or so seconds and using these devices lengthens the amount of time between blinks, which leads to dry eyes, increased tear evaporation and eye strain symptoms. A useful tip would be to use brand name tear drops a few times throughout the day and to take a few more breaks to allow your eyes to blink more, relieving your computer eye strain symptoms.

Computer Vision Syndrome

Another reason your eyes may be more fatigued at the end of a long day on the computer could be that your eye focusing system has to focus and work even harder to see up close. This typically happens to most everyone over the age of 40 with the normal aging process, but sometimes can happen at younger ages too if someone were to have a reduced focusing ability below normal ranges. Most of the time a pair of reading glasses could help bring the eyes more in focus and reduce the eye strain that is placed on them from having to look at the computer screen for hours on end.

More Light the Better

Additionally, another way to help your eyes from straining to see your devices all day long is to make sure you have adequate lighting. Keep your monitor at a 90-degree angle from any light source coming in from a window to reduce any glare bouncing off your screen, which makes it less likely to develop computer eye strain symptoms. Poor lighting in general, especially in a dim or dark room, can place additional strain on your eyes to see more clearly.

The "20-20-20 Rule"

Always remember the “20-20-20 Rule” that is every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break and look 20 feet away from the device you are staring at to reduce computer eye strain symptoms.

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