What Is Computer Vision Syndrome?

You’re probably reading this on an electronic device such as a laptop or cell phone. In fact, like most people these days, you likely spend a great deal of time in front of a digital screen. Computer vision syndrome (also known as digital eye strain) refers to a group of vision and eye-related ailments that can result from long use of screens found in laptops, computers, smart phones, e-readers and other similar devices.


Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is a broad category of vision-related problems and has many possible symptoms. If you spend a lot of time starting at a computer screen and have some of the following symptoms, you may have CVS:

  • Eyestrain
  • Headaches or migraines
  • Distorted or blurred vision
  • Dry or itchy eyes
  • Neck or shoulder pain

How to Avoid CVS:

If you can’t reduce the amount of time that you spend looking at an electronic screen, there are still things you can do to help reduce the strain on your eyes. Make sure that you have adequate lighting in the space where you spend the most time looking at a screen. Try to arrange your screen so that there is as little glare as possible, and don’t get too close. Having a proper, upright sitting posture also helps. Any pre-existing vision problems can make CVS worse as well.

Since many people experience CVS only temporarily, try to take a break from your screen when you start to notice any symptoms.

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About Jessica Dixon

Jessica is an experienced eye care specialist.
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