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Computer Vision

By Derek Tang, Reporter

Unsurprisingly, staring at a computer, television, or phone for extended periods of time has adverse effects on your eyes. Common diagnoses include Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) and Digital Eye Strain (DES) symptoms which are characterized by headaches, irritated eyes, vertigo/dizziness, etc. In the first 10 years of a child’s life, heavy use of electronic devices may cause myopia, or near-sightedness. In fact, 25-30% of affected children need prescriptions for corrective glasses. With the distribution of one-on-one school laptops, CVS symptoms may become more common in the classroom. I asked an anonymous student at Modesto High School about how this affected themselves personally and they told me, “Sometimes, it’s hard to fall asleep at night, but I don’t really care.” Understandably, most teens don’t see CVS as a threat to their health. However, with the increasing prevalence of computers, this indifference may very well become a public health issue for the younger people.

In the United States, the average person spends 7-8 hours in front of some sort of screen display (i.e. computers). Just spending two hours a day is enough to develop Computer Vision Syndrome for most people. Although there are no absolute solutions to outright preventing these symptoms, the effects of computer usage can be reduced significantly with some precautions. I recommend the 20/20/20 rule. Take breaks from looking at a screen every 20 minutes. During this break time, look about 20 feet in any direction for 20 seconds. This allows the eyes to refocus the eye muscles to relax. Secondly, sleep is also great for relieving these symptoms. There isn’t a definite amount of time it takes to sleep off the symptoms, but I believe 15 minutes to an hour works fine.

Computer Vision Syndrome isn’t a major issue for older people – At most it’s just a minor inconvenience. Nonetheless, it still poses a threat to young children and may lead to unnecessary expenses on glasses and appointments to eye doctors. If you are sensible enough to avoid this, try to make sure the young people in your life aren’t bombarding their eyes with flashing lights.

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Derek Tang, Reporter

Derek Tang is a random reporter who joined Journalism for the practical arts credits. In a bizarre and unforeseen twist, he has put forth an unprecedented...

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Computer Vision