Carpal tunnel syndrome and eyestrain are two of the most common conditions that affect habitual computer users. Whether or not these conditions pose serious health risks remains a subject of debate, but it’s safe to say that no one wants to suffer them. Both conditions are painful, and can affect your productivity. The good news is that there are simple ways to prevent suffering from either condition.
How to prevent eye strain:
- Never stare too long at your monitor. Blink occasionally and use eye drops to avoid dry eyes.
- Rest your eyes regularly for about 2-3 minutes. If you have time, take a power nap (5-15 minutes) – this not only gives your eyes a rest, but also gives your brain and body a well-deserved break.
- Use glare-resistant glasses or a glare reduction screen for your monitor.
- Avoid working in too-bright environments.
- Reduce the brightness of your computer screen.
- Place your monitor at least 20 inches from your eyes. If you can’t read the screen, increase the size of your windows. You may also want to visit an optometrist to see if you need glasses or a new prescription.
How to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome:
- Adjust the height of your chair so that your arms and wrists are level with the keyboard.
- Move and click on your mouse lightly.
- Perform this wrist exercise several times throughout the day:
- Stretch your arms out in front of you, palms facing out – as if you were doing push ups. Hold for 5 seconds.
- With arms still stretched, straighten your wrists and relax you hands.
- After a few seconds, make tight fists and point them downward with your wrists. Hold for 5 seconds.
- Repeat step 2.
- Let your arms hang at your sides and then give them a gentle shake
Try incorporating these easy, quick, and safe tips into your daily routine. If they become habits, they’ll help you avoid the inconvenience and pain of carpal tunnel syndrome and eyestrain.
Published on 2nd September 2009 by Jeanne DeWitt.