17 May Good eyesight despite PC work
Our eyes are the weak point of technological progress.
Our visual perception is a very fine and complex process involving the eyes and the brain.
It is estimated that 70-80 percent of the information that is important to us as humans is absorbed through our visual system.
In today’s visually oriented society, the importance of seeing is probably even higher in times of home offices, mobile phones and the like.
This makes vision the most significant sense we have at our disposal.
Reason enough to pay more attention to it. Especially as we are increasingly demanding and unfortunately also overtaxing our sense of sight instead of encouraging it.
The process of seeing is most natural outdoors, when the gaze is spontaneously directed in different directions and distances.
Our human eye is designed to roam and focus on objects, both near and far.
In natural, original vision, our eyes are constantly in motion.
In addition, the various light impressions, colours and shapes stimulate our retina. This keeps the eye muscles loose and relaxed.
How do we use our eyes “naturally”?
When looking into the distance, our eye lens relaxes. The radius of the field of vision thus becomes very wide. This used to be important for survival when people still lived in the wilderness: it allowed them to spot dangerous predators in time. They could perceive out of the corner of their eye.
In addition, hunter-gatherers were depending on natural light sources and knew how to use their eyes even in the dark. Peripheral vision, i.e. seeing out of the corner of the eye, was used daily and thus well trained.
Today, this ability is no longer strongly developed. We do not have to spot predators early and often concentrate entirely on a task in the immediate vicinity.
This is because the demands on our eyes have changed greatly. Most workplaces involve the use of computers, keyboards and screens. Today many work in home offices and people also spend a large part of their free time in front of tablets, laptops, smartphones and co.
This is mainly close-up activity, in other words, our eyes focus on objects that are about 40 to 60 centimetres away.
There is a lack of dynamics, i.e. changing stimuli and the natural movement of our eyes.
What are the consequences of working at the computer?
You have probably noticed that prolonged strenuous work at close range has negative effects on your eyes. Possible consequences include:
- blurred vision
- painful / watery eyes
- Loss of concentration and headaches.
How long do the eyes need to recover?
Initially, these symptoms usually disappear overnight. However, if the condition is not recognised and treated, these symptoms manifest themselves and can lead to visual impairment in relation to our eyes.
New visual habits thus develop that become entrenched and can become permanent.
Studies show that working at close range over a long period of time can lead to vision problems, of which about 88% can be attributed to computer work.
It is a good idea to spend 10% of the time, away from the computer screen, outdoors, preferably with wandering eyes. This relaxes your eyes and can offset the strain of PC work.
The good news is that vision problems can be corrected. All it takes is simple vision training exercises, attention to ergonomics and some movement at work.
To keep our eyes healthy or restore our vision, the following is important:
We need to expose our eyes to different stimuli in order to use and thus stimulate all the visual cells on the retina.
Our eye muscles should be flexible and relaxed.
One of the most important factors is compliance with the 20-20-20 rule:
Vision training aims to restore normal vision instead of simply correcting visual deficiencies with glasses. This helps to avoid or reduce these problems.
In addition, an individually designed workplace, with ergonomic aspects in mind, is enormously important.
How should you design your workplace?
Regular breaks and exercise are also part of ergonomic work, even in the home office.
In order to achieve a lot with extensive computer work, good visual habits are just as important as a healthy posture and optimal working conditions.
It takes at least 6-8 weeks to implement new visual & sitting habits, so be patient with yourself and your body.
We have more tips for healthy work at the computer in our Online Visiontraining course.