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Tips to relieve computer eye strain

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You’re not alone. Blurry vision and dry eyes are rampant, now that roughly one-third of those over age 18 spend at least five hours a day on a computer, tablet or smartphone.

Tips for easing eye strain:

1. Follow the 20-20-20 rule, when on mobile devices. For every 20 minutes on a device, take a 20-second eye break and focus on something 20 feet or more away, says Dr. James Sheedy, director, Vision Per­­for­­mance Institute, Pacific Uni­­ver­­sity, Oregon. “This gives your eyes time to relax,” he says. “It’s like flexing your muscles.”

2. Make the type size larger.

3. Ask your eye doctor for glasses customized for computer work. Over-the-counter glasses you’d wear for driving or reading books are ill-suited for computer use, says Gary Heiting, associate editor of

4. Adjust the brightness and color temperature on your computer settings. Adjust the brightness of the display so it’s approximately the same as the brightness of your surrounding workstation. Color temperature describes the spectrum of visible light emitted by a color display. Reducing the color temperature of your display lowers the amount of blue light emitted by a color display for better long-term viewing comfort.

— Adapted from “Lenses to Ease the Strain From Star­­ing at Screens,” Mickey Meece, The New York Times.

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