If you have a 9-5 job in an office setting, your first thought every day probably isn’t about the potential risks you face while sitting at your desk… at least maybe not until you have had your morning coffee! But there are some actual factors you should consider while sitting at a desk and staring at a computer all day. First of all, ensuring you are managing that daily stress is important for your health. Today, though, we’re chatting about eye health.
Stats from the National Institute for Occupational Health & Safety show about 2,000 people in the U.S. will experience eye injuries each day at work. Many of them are in industries like construction where eye protection is needed. But, what about when you’re looking at your computer all day?
Battling the Blue Light
Computers, smartphones and other electronic devices emit a specific kind of light called “blue light.” Unfortunately, blue light can be harmful to your eyes. If you have trouble sleeping at night or you get frequent headaches, it could be due to this light. When you’re staring at a computer all day, it’s easy for this light to cause a strain on your eyes. If you find yourself pausing to rub your eyes or pinch the bridge of your nose for some relief, it could be time to take action to protect yourself.
Filters, Glasses, and Contact Lenses
There are solutions that can help! Ask you employer to implement blue light filters on your office computers. They’re inexpensive (and some can be found for free). There are even downloadable programs that can work with your computer to change the lighting scheme and protect your eyes.
If you have to be on your phone or a tablet most of the day, you may need to turn to a more personal system to protect your eyes from blue light. If you wear glasses or Eye Contacts, talk to your doctor about getting special lenses that are designed to block blue light. It’s like having a filter right in front of your eyes, so you won’t feel the strain and stress on your vision.
Another good option is to make sure you are having the right amount of breaks from your tech. Give your eyes a break by closing them for a few minutes (yes, even at your desk!) and working to eliminate the stress they’ve been under by staring at screens. Getting away from your desk and taking a walk outside can help your eyes to feel better, too. If you can avoid staring at a screen all day, make sure you do it!
It’s easy to think about the overall health and wellness of your mind and body. Maybe you work out every day, or maybe you do yoga or mindful meditation to de-stress. But, don’t ignore the health of your eyes – especially at work! When you take the time to protect your vision, you might start to notice a difference in how you’re sleeping, your energy levels and more!