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5/19/08
Question: Can Looking at a Computer for Hours Damage Your Eyes?

Answer:
More and more patients now need computer glasses at a much younger age than they did 20 years ago. Computers cause people to use their eyes more and the constant focusing required can cause eye strain and headaches which can be quite severe. There is no physical or anatomic damage to the eyes as a result of this activity however. The inability to concentrate especially instudents can affect their learning of course. Students also might refrain from studying as long as they would otherwise because of the discomfort.

People who are far sighted or hyperopic are more likely to suffer from eyestrain. The glare of the computer screen can cause discomfort and headaches especially in people who are otherwise sensitive to bright lights and glare.

A common question from these people is "when do I need to wear the glasses?". I always tell them common sense willguide them. Just figure out when you have the problem and that is when you need the glasses. If you wear sunglasses, you don't need anybody telling you when to wear them especially if you wear them because the sun is too bright. Common sense will prevail.

The main fear that you are going to ruin your eyes or do damage if you don't wear the computer glasses or reading glasses is a myth. Glaucoma is a disease and if you need drops you must take them or you may lose your eyesight from the damage.

No such relationship exists with reading or computer glasses. The glasses are not medicine that is essential to the health of your eyes. No one will go blind from not wearing necessary reading or computer glasses. The exception is young children under the age of ten because their eyes have not developed properly. There will be more on that in future articles.

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Disclaimer: This information is not a recommendation to fail to seek proper eye examinations from your eye doctor. I am a Board Certified Ophthalmologist.

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