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October is Computer Learning Month

iPhone, Samsung Galaxy, iPad, Kindle, Nook, PS4, Nintendo, Xbox … these are the computers of the 21st Century.

Computer Learning Month is a time for focusing attention on the important role computers, software and other technologies play in our lives, particularly in our children’s learning and their future. However, many computer users have Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Studies show that 50% – 90% of computer users experience the symptoms of CVS.

When using these devices, one is exposed to an increased amount of blue light, especially when these devices are held close to the eyes and face. While there is some early concern that prolonged exposure to the blue light wavelength of the visible spectrum may play a role in Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), it is well established that artificial blue light can interrupt normal sleep patterns. The body’s biological clock works in rhythms that are set by the amount of light and dark the body is exposed to. This is called the circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythms control the timing of many physiological processes. They determine sleeping and feeding patterns, as well as brain activity, hormone production and cell regeneration. Research has found that exposure to blue light suppresses the production of melatonin more than any other type of light. It is believed that the shorter wavelengths in blue light is what causes the body to produce less melatonin because the body is more sensitive to this type of light. These high energy rays are emitted from hand-held devices, LED computer screens, and CFL and LED light bulbs.

The good news is that the eye and vision symptoms and problems of CVS can usually be alleviated by good eye care and/or by changes in the work environment.  Our doctors can recommend ways and prescribe computer or office lenses to help eliminate or alleviate the eye fatigue that occurs with computer use and recommend non-glare treatments that help reflect blue light. Even if you don’t already wear prescription glasses, Dr. Kaminski can prescribe lenses that help alleviate tired eyes and eye strain from working with digital devices.