As freelancing is booming and work from home isn’t going out of fashion any time soon. People are using their screens like never before.
Eye health experts are concerned that this might turn into computer vision syndrome.
In simple terms, any kind of extended screen time can cause eye strain or computer vision syndrome. This results in dry eyes, eye fatigue, neck & shoulder pain, headaches, blurred vision, and deteriorated vision.
This problem is especially relatable to freelancers. Therefore, worry not.
We’ve got 7 ways on – how to prevent eye strain for freelancers.
1. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Proper distance
Many times, the reason behind eye strain is simple: You are sitting too close to your screen.
You might not feel it, but this is increasing the risks of eye problems. This is even concerning when you do it for hours without blinking much.
Therefore, no matter if it’s a laptop, a TV, or a monitor, keep it at a proper distance. The distance should be about 50-100 cms. You can also place your hand as a measurement and keep the screen as far from your eyes.
2. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Proper lightning
Proper lighting of your room is a must even if your screen is backlit. Your lights should be neither too bright, nor too dim.
Otherwise, it can lead to a huge amount of eye strain or even headache. That is why it is important to maintain proper lighting.
However, it’s really simple to do it. Just make sure that you don’t feel uncomfortable when viewing your screen vs when you’re looking at something else in your room.
Additionally, it’s also important to check for glare as it makes it harder to read or work.
Although most screens come with anti-glare protection, but if you’re still facing the problem, adjust your windows or change your place if you still see the reflection on your screen.
3. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Proper font size
Sometimes, problems as simple as adjusting your font size can make a huge difference.
This is crucial if you’re a writer, content creator, or someone who does a lot of reading or researching.
The smaller your fonts are, the more strain you’ll get. Therefore, it easier to read text when it’s bigger.
To adjust your font size on your laptop/desktop, follow these settings.
Start > Settings > Ease of Access > Display
Display > Resolution > Scaled > Larger Text
4. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Your posture
You might not realize but your posture will directly impact your eyes. Therefore, if you can maintain the proper posture, you are more likely to protect your eyes.
Start by placing your feet completely flat under the table and wrists slightly raised rather than leaning on your keyboard as you sit down to work.
Now adjust your screen just a bit below your natural line of sight.
Make sure that you sit straight throughout the time and not slouching at all. This will maintain the proper blood flow and your eyes will be naturally benefited.
5. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Taking breaks
It’s very easy to forget to take breaks when we are working from home. However, if you’re not taking sufficient breaks, your sight will be affected and you will also get neck and shoulder pain.
Therefore, practice taking regular breaks. These breaks can be 4-5 minutes short but you will get tremendous benefits.
You can also go for the 20-20-20 rule. Where you divert your attention to something 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
When you do this, you blink more and your eyes are more relaxed and hydrated.
Taking a break is not only healthy for your eyes but when you start working again, you feel more productive and refreshed.
6. How to prevent eye strain for freelancers – Filter blue light
Blue light is not something new. It’s even present in sunlight. And we need blue light in the daytime as it boosts our attention and reaction time.
However, our screen contains significantly concentrated amounts of blue light and when are exposed for a long period of time, it has many health issues.
You will get headaches, eye strain, and your sleep will also be affected because of the circadian rhythm.
Therefore, you can use blue light glasses while working. You can also use third-party applications which filters out blue light from your screen.
It’s a well-known fact that when we are looking at our screens, we forget to blink. It’s simply because we are too focused to even perform an involuntary action – blinking.
According to studies, regular blinking occurs about 15 times per minute. But during screen time, it is reduced to only about 5-7 times in a minute.
Blinking is the natural way of keeping our eyes healthy – eyes produce moisture when we blink. But when we forget to do it naturally, problems like dryness, irritation, reduced vision, and discomfort can happen.
Therefore, it’s as simple as that—blink more often.
This article simply offers advice on – how to prevent eye strain for freelancers, working from home professionals, or anyone else who has to stare at their screen all the time.
Therefore, if you have something more serious, we recommend you visit an ophthalmologist.
But for now, for most people with computer vision syndrome, these tips and recommendations are a perfect way to keep your eyesight healthy and prevent eye strain.