Monday, February 05, 2007

For your eyes only

How to deal with computer vision syndrome ...

"The price we are paying as a consequence of changing lifestyles and prolonged computer use. Nearly 70 per cent of computer users in the city suffer from Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) or vision-related problems and other symptoms caused by extended computer use.

Take heart. Calcutta now has a dedicated clinic to address CVS, “the first of its kind outside Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai”. The speciality clinic at Sunetra Family Eye Care Centre in Survey Park, Santoshpur, was opened by IT minister Debesh Das on Wednesday. Joint director (health services) S.K. Ojha was also present.

“We all use computers and are likely to suffer from these symptoms, often without sparing a thought for it. This CVS clinic will answer a crying need and should be a real boon to the IT sector,” Das said on the occasion.

“An increasing number of people using computers are seeking medical advice for eye strain and irritation, along with back, neck and shoulder soreness. Our clinic is specially equipped to treat all such symptoms, as well as create awareness,” said Amitava Biswas, who with his wife Neena, both alumni consultants of Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai, founded Sunetra.

Anyone who spends more than two hours a day in front of the computer screen is likely to experience some degree of CVS. Children playing games on the computer and those above 40 working on computers are more susceptible to CVS, according to Neena Biswas, in charge of the CVS clinic. Those with refractive errors, binocular vision problems, focusing disorders or dry eye disease are likely to suffer from worse symptoms, she added.

Besides long hours of computer use, the other common causes of CVS are inadvertent less blinking, improper workstation ergonomics, inadequacies of eye co-ordination and focusing, and bifocal glasses. Reading a computer screen is hard on the eyes because of the way the characters are formed on the monitor. The video display is made up of pixels or tiny dots, rather than solid lines as on a printed page.

Treatment of CVS differs from patient to patient and includes exercises with accommodative flippers, artificial tears medication and ergonomic adjustments. The speciality clinic at Sunetra will offer advice on all these and also on how can one prevent CVS."    (Continued via The Telegraph)    [Ergonomics Resources]

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