Wednesday, September 11
Writing Tip: Combating Eye Strain
We all know about good ergonomics - set the computer screen at eye level, do not 'lean' the screen and clean the screens often to cut down on glare. We also know that we should use ergonomic chairs for our backs and that florescent lights are bad, bad very bad. Those rules all remain, but here are a few extras to keep in mind that are eye specific:
3. Don't forget to blink. Seriously. Yes, I know its a body function, something you don't have to think about to do. But think about it. Please. According to experts we actually blink less often when looking at digital screens – computer, ereader…even television. So during a commercial break or when you finish reading the 20th email or complete that chapter, blink. And then blink again. Ten times in a row, my eye doctor tells me, is a good start. Then go back to reading/watching/whatever.
2. Go up a size. No, it doesn't mean your eyes are fat. Not even close. This is more for those of us using tablets/smartphones often. Increase your font size and browser settings by one 'size' and instead of reading on that bright, white screen all the time, rest your brightness settings to about 60% (50% if you can). Why? Well, it saves a little battery life, but primarily because it is easier for your eyes to read on a slightly dimmer screen. Oh, and while your checking in on Facebook or reading those emails, put the viewing angle slightly below your eye level.
1. Employ 20-20-20 vision. Every 20 minutes step away from the computer for 20 seconds and look at something that is 20 feet away. When my eye doctor first told me about this, I set a timer to remind myself. Now it is a habit. Every 20 minutes I leave my desk and for 20 seconds I look at bebe's blanket hanging over the back of the sofa. Then I'll fold laundry or see if the dog needs to go out. In total I take about 5 minutes away. Those little breaks are whole-body good. Plus, sometimes I figure out a plot hole fix!
Remember, be kind to your eyes! Okay, readers, what computer tip do you have for us?