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Mashable’s Great New Computer Vision Syndome Infographic

CVS MashableIf you spend a lot of time on the internet, then you probably are familiar with Mashable. It is pretty much the leading website covering online and high-tech trends. Mashable knows its readers and knows they spend a lot of time on computers and digital devices. Therefore, it continues to publish information about Computer Vision Syndrome – the group of visual conditions that affect people who spend many hours on the computer.

Last year Mashable published the article I wrote, 5 Important Tips for Better Eye Health in a Digital World. Recently, they published a great infographic (thumbnail on the right), with lots of useful information about how eyes and technology interact.

Check it out and, as always, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to come in for an eye exam. 🙂

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

New EyeFiles Video on How Computer Use Can Affect Children’s Vision

Have you ever flown on an airplane? While watching the luggage come and go, you’ve probably noticed that all of the workers have large earmuffs on. Why earmuffs in Florida? They wear them because the planes are loud! Workers at airports need to protect their ears so the noise won’t hurt them and cause hearing problems.

Workers in offices also have to be careful, not usually from loud noise but from computer use. Just like repeated exposure to loud noise can cause hearing problems, long hours focusing on the computer or digital device can cause eyestrain and vision problems. This is called Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) and it can lead to problems like watery, irritated eyes, headache, neck pain, and reduced efficiency at work.

Every day, I talk to patients who deal with computer vision syndrome, and I recommend ways that they can protect their eyes and vision. The right computer set up and lighting is important. Taking breaks is important. For some people, I prescribe computer vision glasses to help relieve eyestrain. You can read more about this in an article I wrote for Mashable called 5 Important Tips for Better Eye Heath in a Digital World.

But protecting our eyes and ears is not just for adults or just for work. In fact, children may be even more susceptible to certain problems than adults because they are still growing and developing. And increasingly, much of their work AND play takes place on digital devices, so parents need to be aware of how computers can affect their children and their eyes.

I’m happy to share that VSP Vision Care has a new EyeFiles video out specifically about computer vision syndrome and children:

[youtube]0X-sv4apa8M[/youtube]

For more specific information, check out this handy Question and Answer handout that I helped VSP Vision Care create to accompany the video. It discusses:

  • What digital eyestain is
  • How it can affect kids
  • What the symptoms are
  • Steps parents can take to reduce symptoms

If you have any questions or concerns about how the computer or handheld device is affecting your children’s eyes, please stop by or call us. You can also read previous CVS blog posts here.

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.
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Top Ten New Year’s Resolutions for Computer Vision Syndrome

If 2010 has taught me anything, it is that our lives are becoming increasingly digital. Not only is more of our work performed on computers and online, but much of our leisure time, too. This is illustrated by the fact that Amazon has recently announced that it has sold more Kindles than any other book or product. But all of this time in front of screens can take its toll on our eyes. They may become irritated and red. Your vision may become blurry or double. And all this may make you less productive at work or reduce your gaming performance. All of these symptoms are elements of Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Fortunately, there are things that you can do limit the effects of CVS.

Every new year I provide the Bright Eyes Family Vision Care Top Ten New Year’s Resolutions. In past years, I’ve covered eye health, children’s vision, and saving money. So for 2011, to help you keep your eyes in optimum condition at the computer or digital device, this year’s resolutions list will help you combat Computer Vision Syndrome.

1. Take Breaks – Your eyes work hard when using the computer, e-readers, and phones. Give them some time to relax. Use the “20-20-20 rule.” Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break, and look at something 20 feet away. Every hour or so, talk a longer break. I use and recommend a free application called Workrave that is fully customizable to help you remember to give your eyes (and hands) a rest.

2. Monitor Settings – Today most people have LCD screens. Generally, the larger the screen the better. Increase the font size if it helps.

3. Monitor Position – Position your monitor at least 22 inches away and at an angle that you don’t have to look up most of the time. Making it a natural, comfortable position can help limit eyestrain and neck problems.

4. Blink! – Research studies show that people blink less when using the computer, up to 1/3 less. Blinking washes your eyes in naturally Computerstherapeutic tears, so be sure to blink on a regular basis.

5. Glasses – Make sure you have proper lenses for the computer. Specially prescribed computer glasses may help significantly reduce the symptoms of CVS. Often these are different from glasses for driving and general activities like shopping. Ask your optometrist if you would benefit from computer lenses.

6. Lighting – Keep bright lighting overhead to a minimum. Keep your desk lamp or window light shining on your desk, not on your monitor. Try to keep window light off to the side, rather than in front or behind you.

7. Position your chair – Your body position effects your eye position – and vice versa. Make sure you are sitting in a chair with adequate lower-back support. Position your chair so that you are comfortable. Each person has a preference for his or her chair, so take some time to find what’s best for you.

8. Eye exams – Be sure to discuss CVS with your optometrist at your annual eye exam. He or she will discuss your computer use and can perform specific tests to determine if you would benefit from computer glasses, eye drops or medical treatment.

9. Gadgets – iPads, Kindles, Blackberries and other mobile devices are hugely useful, but have tiny screens and can cause even more symptoms than a desktop computer. Be aware of issues like glare and be sure and take frequent breaks.

10. Don’t forget the kids! – Keep in mind that children can experience CVS, too. And they are less self-aware and are less likely to tell parents if they are having problems. So set limits ahead of time and watch them for any signs of visual problems. This applies to hand-held games, too – especially soon to be released Nintendo 3DS.

If you didn’t have a thorough eye exam in 2010, don’t put it off any longer. Give us a call at 813-792-0637 to schedule your appointment. We’ll make sure your eyes are working their best at the computer! You can also read more about Computer Vision Syndrome on our blog.

A special thanks to Dr. Jeffrey Anshel of Corporate Vision Consulting for providing input for this list.

See Well!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care

 

Dr. Nate Writes Computer Vision Syndrome Article for Mashable

Computer Vision syndrome Tampa

At Bright Eyes, many of our patients spend a lot of time at the computer. We try to educate these patients about Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) so that they can be as productive as possible.

As a recent guest writer for the tech website Mashable, Dr. Nate discussed in the article here, tips on how to protect your eyes in an increasingly digital world. An important example is the 20-20-20 rule, which advises that every 20 minutes take a 20 second break and look at something 20 feet away.

The response received is a further testament to the number of people who are affected by the symptoms of computer vision syndrome. The article has garnered over 2,000 “likes” through Facebook and over 2,300 tweets in Twitterville. With more and more information becoming available in tiny font at our fingertips, it is important that we are aware of the risks from both computers and handheld devices, and take the proper steps to protect our eyes.

If you find your eyes feeling tired or fatigued, your vision blurry or double or get headaches when working on the computer, be sure to have a thorough eye exam by your optometrist. If you would like a recommendation for an eye doctor in your area, feel free to ask us.

Justin Schoonover, CPO

Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.
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VSP’s Ask an Eye Docotor: Live Q and A about Computer Vision Syndrome

qmWith American workers now spending over 858 million hours a day using digital devices and kids consuming electronic media up to 7.5 hours a day, health problems caused by computers aren’t going away any time soon.

In fact, vision problems related to computer and hand-held device are so common, they collectively have a name: Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). I talk about CVS literally every single day with patients.

That is why I am so excited that VSP Vision Care, the largest eye care benefits provider in the US, is hosting a live ‘Ask an Eye Doctor’ web event next Tuesday. It will feature me discussing and answering questions about CVS. I’ll talk about what it is and how you can keep your eyes comfortable when using digital devices.

Here are the details:
Register here: https://my.dimdim.com/vspvisioncare (Check out the widget on the top right)
When: Tuesday, September 21 at 2:00pm EST 11:00am PST

What: A live Q&A about Computer Vision Syndrome, a common condition that occurs in people who spend extended time in front of a computer screen.
Where: https://my.dimdim.com/vspvisioncare ?

If you have questions about CVS that you’d like to submit, email them to me at AskDrNate@brighteyestampa.com.

You can also find more info on CVS here:
http://vspblog.com/2010/07/29/eye-health-for-the-workplace/

See Well!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

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Computer Vision Syndrome in The Wall Street Journal

If you’re like me or countless others who work at a computer for many hours a day, you’d be interested to learn that there is a term for the eye fatigue and strain you get after a long days work. Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) was highlighted in this article today in The Wall Street Journal. The reason for this problem is because most of us who wear corrective lenses, and even those who don’t need glasses at all, are not being corrected for the proper focal length at which our computer monitors are sitting. Our eyes stay in this focused state for long periods at a time, usually without breaks to help our eyes relax.

There are options listed in the article to treat the symptoms of CVS, including a dedicated pair of computer glasses made to focus at your monitor, multifocal contacts, and even corrective surgery. Some are obviously more conservative than others, but one thing that most doctors will agree upon is that short, frequent breaks are always recommended for anyone who works extensively at a computer. Dr. Nate was even quoted!

The Wall Street Journal: How Technology Tries Our Eyesight

All The Best!

Justin Schoonover, CPO

Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

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Dr. Nate’s “Workplace Vision” guest post for VSP Blog

Many of our patients have VSP as their primary vision plan. VSP is the largest and most influential of the vision plans and for the last several years they have embraced social media to help educate their millions of member on eye and vision heath issues.

Recently, VSP contacted me to see if I would be interested in writing a guest post for their blog on vision at the workplace. Since Computer Vision Syndrome is a specialty of mine, I was happy to contribute. The result is this blog post. You can also watch a very cool video, download an eye health guide for the workplace, and enter to win an IPad at VSP Facebook page here.

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Do you have “Computer Vision Syndrome”?

Are your eyes tired after working on the computer for several hours? Do you get an “afternoon headache” during the week? Do you feel that your vision is blurrier when you drive home from work? Computer use can take its toll on your eyes and vision. Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) affects millions of people around the country, but there are some simple solutions. Continue reading

Computer Vision Syndrome in the News

A friend and colleague, optometrist Jeffrey Anshel, appeared on television yesterday to discuss Computer Vision Syndrome.

It is a little light-hearted reminder to pay attention to your eyes when you are at the computer. And if you experience discomfort or fatigue at the computer, be sure to get your eyes examined.

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See Well!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

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