Bengaluru: With no fixed working hours during work from home, screen time has increased for most of the working professionals. Blurry vision, red eyes, burning sensations, headaches and mucus discharges are some of the basic symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome. It is generally faced by people with more than 4-5 hours of screen time.
Ophthalmologist Dr. Rakesh Sharma, addressing the rise in the number of CVS cases, said, “We are nowadays seeing more cases than before especially after the pandemic. Amongst the working professionals, if we are treating around 400 to 500 patients per month, almost 60 to 70 percent patients will have one or the other symptom of CVS. In last one month, I have witnessed around more than 300 cases whereas before lockdown it used to be around 100-150.”
A research study on knowledge, awareness and practice of CVS in digital device users by Sudanese Journal of Ophthalmology showed that only 32 percent people have heard about the syndrome out of which around 65 percent could correctly define it. Doctors say that not only common people but approximately 40 percent health professionals are also unaware about the syndrome and end up turning late for the treatment. This makes the condition worse and increases the risk of myopia as well.
Shashwat Verma, Project Engineer at Wipro Limited, Bengaluru is one of the many professionals who complains about a decline in work accuracy due to extended screen time. He said, “Last month I used to have mucus discharge in my left side of the eyes. It was so bad that whenever I used to wake up, I had repetitive discharges. This started affecting my work and very often I used to commit syntax errors while writing the codes.”
Doctors say myopia has gradually increased among children attending online classes due to longer screen time. Smaller screens tend to put more strain on the eyes, but not all parents can afford laptops for their children. Many parents also complain of their child becoming inattentive in classes, experiencing burning sensations in the eyes and headaches regularly.
However experts believe if individuals exposed to longer screen time follow some basic preventive measures, they can escape from adverse effects of CVS.
Dr. B.L. Sujatha Rathod, Director and Professor of Minto Ophthalmic Hospital, advised people to have break-up rephrase time. She added, “Follow the 20-20-20 rule. That is every twenty minutes take a short break of twenty seconds and look at an object which is at 20 feet. Second tip is blink more frequently, what happens is when we are very attentive our blinking rates fall from 20 per minute to 7 per minute. This does not help in equal distribution of tear phylum.”
In addition to this, she stressed on the use of preservative free, lubricating eye drops twice a day to take care of the dryness. “Your systems should be at eye-level with well-lit rooms. Consumption of more fluids, anti-oxidants and greens help in improving lubrication and maintain good eye health.”
Experts also suggest reducing the use of mobile phones while travelling as it causes more strain on eyes.