Sitting and staring at a computer all day does a body bad. From increased heart problems and issues with posture to digital eye strain, the sedentary lifestyle of office work is a hazard. In fact, according to new research published in the journal Clinical and Experimental Optometry, as many as 90% of digital device users experience symptoms of digital eye strain.

These desk jockeys can experience ocular conditions such as presbyopia, accommodative and vergence anomalies and altered blinking patterns that can reduce blink rate, cause incomplete blinks and, eventually, result in dry eye.

The researchers suggest a seven-point strategy clinicians can use to help patients combat this:

1. Correct any underlying refractive errors.
2. Address any vergence anomalies.
3. Initiate blink rate training.
4. Employ artificial tears to help alleviate dry eye symptoms.
5. Use contact lenses with enhanced comfort, particularly at the end of day and in environments that can exacerbate dryness.
6. Consider blue light-absorbing color filters.
7. Manage any accomodative anomalies.

However, the study says, there is one technique that’s more important than any of these: prevention. That can involve ensuring an ergonomic work environment and obtaining a visual examination and eye care to treat visual disorders.

“Special consideration is needed for people at a high risk of digital eye strain, such as computer workers and contact lens wearers,” the study’s abstract says.

Coles-Brennan C, Sulley A, Youn G. Management of digital eye strain. Clin Exp Optom. May 23, 2018.  Accessed June 19, 2018.