How to stop eyes from hurting?
January 25, 2012 9:39 AM   Subscribe

My eyes hurt! Anti-glare screen recommendations requested.

I have to stare at a computer for long periods during the day and my eyes always hurt. I take breaks every hour or so (short), and try and close my eyes or look beyond the screen every so often.

I'm looking for a better solution since this occurs pretty much every day. Does anyone have an anti-glare screen for a regular sized PC monitor that they've had good results with?

If you have any hacks other than taking breaks or using eye drops I would love to hear them!
posted by modoriculous to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Get your eyes checked by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. I have dry eye (blepharitis), especially bad in the winter with the dry heat everywhere or if I spend a long time looking at a computer screen, and your symptoms sound similar to mine.

My eye doctor told me that overuse of eye drops can lead to glaucoma... another good reason to get a doctor's recommendations for treatment.

The non-drop treatment my doctor prescribed: Warm compresses on the eyes, 5 minutes a day. I put some rice in a couple of socks, microwave them on medium for 2 minutes, and voila, compresses. I've noticed quite a bit of improvement since I started doing this daily.
posted by Currer Belfry at 9:54 AM on January 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Same issue :
Things that have helped were to increase font size even though I don't really to; using eyedrops that are solely lubricants (not anti-inflammatories or w/e the red-eye ones are) before bed; turning monitor brightness to the lowest setting; wearing prescription sunglasses w/ permission from my boss at times.
posted by MangyCarface at 9:58 AM on January 25, 2012

F.lux is a program that will "soften" your screen based on the lighting in your room and the time of day. My eyes tended to hurt at night, particularly if I had been staring at a screen for most of the day. F.lux helped make nighttime screen viewing easier on my eyes.
posted by mcmile at 11:34 AM on January 25, 2012 [2 favorites]

You can wear protective glasses (0 dioptres) just when you are at the computer. Glasses look great and protect your eyes against desication, dust particles, monitor rays and stray embers while you are sticking your head out of the window of the last steam powered train in regular service about 25 years ago (true story).
posted by hat_eater at 12:02 PM on January 25, 2012

Put a light behind your monitor. I don't know exactly why this helps but the extra ambient light makes it easier on my eyes. I'll hazard a guess and say it makes the room brighter so my pupils constrict and reduce the amount of light from the monitor that reaches my eyes.
posted by chairface at 1:47 PM on January 25, 2012

(assuming you're working in an office) have you tried swapping monitors with coworkers? Brightness and contrast is definitely important (reduce brightness so that you're not in effect staring at a light bulb all day), but just the way monitors recreate pixels can make a huge difference. I'm generally good w/ computer monitors, but my eyes just broke down within 10mins of using a certain Dell 24-in monitor several years ago. Switched to another vendor that used different display technology and I had no problems.

You could also try tinted glasses. There are several companies that produce overpriced tinted glasses as 'computer glasses,' cheap light-yellow tint glasses likely will yield similar results. YMMV there as well, I tried these and had more discomfort using them.
posted by Muu at 2:06 PM on January 25, 2012

If you wear glasses, get them with an anti-glare coating. It's not cheap, but it cuts down on reflections.

I also use polarized sunglasses when driving. The polarization filters out glare and reflected sunlight. I haven't found any that are clear, rather than tinted, but they may be available for office use.

No two people's eyes are the same. You need to go to a computer store and try out the various glare filters.

If you haven't been to an ohthomoligst lately, make an appointment. Glare sensitivity can mean you're developing cataracts.
posted by KRS at 4:56 PM on January 25, 2012

Seconding making an appointment with an ophthalmologist. What you're experiencing might not be due to glare. Not saying it's anything ominous at all, but it might be just extreme dryness. And there's a whole magnitude of eye drops beyond Visine--which don't lubricate your eyes, anyway.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 6:28 PM on January 25, 2012

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