A great number of people are working from home these days, and if you’re in this group, your eyes are probably strained like never before.
In a home office, you have fewer reasons to get up or look away from the monitor.
Many people just go from the computer screen to the phone screen to the TV screen.
Staring at various devices all day can cause your eyes to hurt, dry out, or become watery.
It can be scary when you notice you have blurry or double vision.
But there’s hope!
If you take breaks, use eye drops, and do eye exercises, your eyes will be as good as new.
How to Prevent Eye Strain While Working From Home
Take breaks frequently throughout your work day.
Breaks allow you to rest your eyes and reset your vision.
An easy rule to remember is “20-20-20.”
Every twenty minutes, take twenty seconds and look at an object that’s at least twenty feet away.
The distance is important because you’re spending so much time focused on your screen.
Your eye muscles need to readjust to working at different distances rather than being tensed up in one position.
The timing is twenty seconds because that’s how long it takes for your eyes to completely relax.
Try setting a timed reminder so you won’t forget this rule.
Blinking is a miniature break, so remind yourself to blink while you work because people’s rates of blinking decrease dramatically while they are on a computer.
If you wear contact lenses, try giving your eyes a rest from time to time and wearing glasses.
If you don’t take breaks, you can guarantee that your eyes will be strained.
With eye strain often comes dryness.
Eye drops are a temporary solution to this problem.
They provide artificial tears that lubricate your eyes.
You can get preservative-free eye drops, or the ones with preservatives.
Those without are less likely to irritate your eyes, but they also have a much shorter shelf life.
However, even the variety with preservatives expire after three months.
One solution is to buy preservative-free eye drops in single use containers.
Think about how quickly you’ll use up drops and whether your eyes are sensitive, and decide which type of eye drops is right for you.
As mentioned above, working on the computer tends to keep your eye muscles in one position all day.
Like any muscle, they respond well to being exercised.
These two exercises are wonderful for alleviating eye strain.
The eye roll is essentially what it sounds like.
You’ll simply roll your eyes, but do it methodically.
Without moving your head, look as far to the left as you can, then high up.
Look as far to the right as you can, then down.
Go two or three times slowly in one direction, then reverse.
With time, you may notice your field of vision getting larger.
The pencil push-up is perfect if you’re experiencing blurry vision, as it helps your eye muscles learn to focus.
Take a pencil and hold it at arm’s length, focusing on the text on the side.
As you bring it closer, retain that focus.
When the text starts to blur, stop and keep your eyes fixed on it, then slowly move the pencil back to the starting position.
This is one repetition.
Scatter sets of ten throughout the day.
Doing too many at once will only fatigue your eyes.
Eye issues are common for remote workers, and it’s no wonder why considering all the strain you put them through.
The eyes are an aspect of health that few people worry about, and yet they’re vital to your functioning and productivity.
Keep your eyes in top shape by taking breaks, using eye drops, and doing eye exercises.
Your optometrist will thank you.