Friday, February 6, 2009

Eye Experiments

I have a tendency to get caught up in what I'm doing on the computer and not take a break until either my bladder forces me or I run out of steam. This, I've found, is not so good on the eyes. Especially since I have a tendency not to blink often when surfing the Internet, and to stare, wide-eyed when pondering new plot ideas. They eye strain has taken its toll.

Cody was sweet enough to find me a program that keeps track of when I should take eye breaks. While I'm lost in thought, lost in writing, lost in editing, lost in blogging, lost in...well, you get the idea, all that time, my computer is keeping track of the minutes for me. I've set it to turn the screen black every 25 minutes and leave it black for 2 minutes.

Today was the first real trial run of the eye-break program. I've got to admit, each time the screen faded out to black, I felt a surge of annoyance as my train of thought was interrupted. However, after two minutes of sitting with my eyes closed, contemplating whatever I was doing or nothing at all, I've found that I was able to turn to my work with renewed focus. They were minimeditations, I guess, and I think my work day went smoother because of them.

For all you out there with desk jobs that keep you staring at your screen for hours on end (Argg, it did it to me again! Okay, I'm back, and my eyes actually have moisture on them again.), I highly suggest this program. Like I said, it's temporarily frustrating when it first darkens your screen unexpectedly (you can set it to warn you, but I found that distracting), but it's helpful in the long run.

1 comment:

Michael Edson, MS, L.Ac. said...

Along with proper ergonomics, taking regular breaks from the computer to do eye exercises can help prevent or reduce the effects of computer eye strain.

Our eyes and vision were designed for viewing distance as hunters and gatherers, and not for ongoing near work as required by regular computer use. As a result, Computer Eye Strain is becoming one of the major eye complaints heard by eye doctors today.

Symptoms can include increased myopia, blurred vision, headaches, slow refocusing, difficulty concentrating, neck, shoulder and back pain

Eye strain can be reduced significantly by taking regular breaks from the computer, resting your eyes, stretching and doing eye exercises.

For a demo of 3 great eye exercises by Dr. Grossman, one of the Country's leading behavioral optometrists, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W10j2fL0hy0

Dr. Grossman also offers his free eye exercise booklet at his website at Natural Eye Care Free Eye Exercises with his 11 favorite eye exercises and acupressure eye points to massage regularly.

Finally, there is also an excellent section at his website on "Computer Eye Strain" under "Eye Diseases" that provides a Computer Eye Strain “Self-Help“ section with great tips of relieving eyestrain due to computer use.

Also, a few research studies show that supplementing with 6mg per day of astaxanthin per day significantly improved eye strain at week 2 and 4 of the test period.

For more information, go to Natural Eye Care for Computer Eye Strain