Find out if your eyesight can be affected by spending a long time in front of a monitor.

How to know if the computer can affect your eyesight

Do you spend more than seven hours a day in front of a computer? A new study suggests that staring at a screen for so long damages the tear film and can affect vision , removing an essential component that helps keep eyes clean, lubricated and healthy.

The tear film contains a protein called MUC5AC and is made up of three extremely thin layers that cover and protect the eye. Those who continuously look at a computer have MUC5AC concentrations similar to those with dry eye syndrome, a condition in which the eyes do not receive adequate moisture due to insufficient tears being produced or evaporating too quickly.

The monitor can affect eyesight, studies say

Ophthalmologist Yuichi Uchino, from Keio University in Japan, and his team analyzed the tears of 96 office workers and measured MUC5AC levels. Those participants whose work required looking at a computer screen had to complete questionnaires about their work hours, symptoms, and eye problems.

The team found that those who watched a computer for more than seven hours a day had an average of 5.9mg of MUC5AC. In comparison, those who spent less than five hours a day in front of a screen had 9.8mg of the protein. People who suffer from dry eye syndrome have an average of 3.5mg, therefore, spending a lot of time in front of the monitor can affect your eyesight.

According to Dr. Uchino, people tend to open their eyes more and blink less when looking at a computer, which encourages the evaporation of tears. To avoid excessive dryness, it is recommended to keep a humidifier in the workspace and avoid direct exposure to the air conditioner.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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