Tips to Minimize Eye Strain When Using Screens

Eye Strain

Do you spend hours in front of the computer screen and end up with tired eyes? It is normal. We spend the day looking at screens (computers, cell phones, tablets, TVs …) that increase eye strain.

Next, we are going to see a series of tips that can help you reduce eye strain and headaches due to eye fatigue.

How to Prevent Eye Strain From Screen

The rule of 25

It is probably the most important advice to take care of the health of your eyes. It consists of taking a 25-second break every 25 minutes. During those 25 seconds we must separate the view of the monitor and look at a distant point that allows us to relax the muscles of the eyes.

The ideal is to look towards a point that is more than 5 meters from us. The rule is very easy to memorize, but somewhat more complicated to carry out. I recommend that you use an alarm or use a Pomodoro app so that you remember to pause every 25 minutes and not once a month.

Brightness and reflections on the monitor

The brightness of our monitor should match the lighting of the surrounding work area. A good way to set the appropriate level of brightness is to put a white image on the monitor, for example, the background of a web page, and move a few meters away.

Look at the monitor and see if it is lighting something in the room. If it illuminates any area, it is too bright, you will have to lower the brightness. If it looks dull and gray, it’s probably too dark and you’ll need to turn it up a bit.

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It is also important to reduce reflections on the screen. To do this, try to place the monitor perpendicular to the closest window. Since this is not always possible, you can also choose to use an anti-reflective filter.

Position the monitor well

The computer screen should be at a distance of between 50 and 75 centimetres from our face. Also, the centre of the screen should be 15-20 degrees below horizontal eye level, this means you should be looking down a little bit in your work.

A good method to achieve this is to adjust the top edge of the monitor so that it is at the same height as your eyes. If you can’t adjust the height of the screen, put a pack of folios or books underneath to raise it.

Text size

This is usually a very subjective aspect because many people prefer to have very small text to be able to see more things at once. However, if we want to take care of our eyes, a good rule of thumb is to set a font size in which the text is three times larger than the smallest size that you can read (from your usual position).

Background and font colors

In terms of colors, the combination that least forces our eyes is a very light white or yellow background with black letters. But there is no problem using light text on a dark background either. Of course, you have to avoid intermediate color combinations, since they do not have enough contrast.

Take care of your eyes

If you wear contact lenses, your eyes have to work harder when looking at the screen.

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In that case, I recommend using glasses once or twice a week, it will delay the appearance of eye fatigue. If you can’t, remove your lenses as soon as you get home.

If you wear glasses, use anti-reflective glasses. They cost just a little more, but you will greatly improve your eyestrain.

In all cases, including people who do not wear glasses or contact lenses, use artificial tear drops to improve the moisture of your eyes. When we look at a screen we blink less frequently, so the eyes dry out.

To fix it, use a moisturizing solution that hydrates your eyes.

Adjusts the color temperature according to the ambient lighting

It is better to use a warmer (yellowish) color temperature in dark rooms and a cooler (more bluish) color temperature in bright rooms.

Color temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin (K), on a scale that ranges from 1,000 to 10,000.

During daylight hours, it is best to keep the monitor at a color temperature of about 6,500K. And at night, we can make the screen warmer by lowering the color temperature to about 3,400 K.

Although most monitors allow you to adjust the color temperature manually, the easiest way to do it by software, since you can adjust the color temperature automatically based on the time of day:

Windows 10 already includes a feature that can be found under the name “Night Light.”

Night Light

  • Most mobile operating systems also incorporate similar modes (night mode, reading mode, etc.).
  • We can also use the free F.lux program, compatible with almost all operating systems.