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Putting Eye Strain "Under the Microscope"

Putting Eye Strain "Under the Microscope"

Eye Strain at Work

It's a sad truth that employers generally like to distance themselves from the problems associated with a repetitive strain syndrome (RSS), such as eye strain. Eyes can become strained because the muscles around them are strained. So, when job responsibilities place a repeated demand on eye muscles (such as computer workers), the affected employee can demonstrate the symptoms associated with eye strain (such as headaches and sore eyes).

A common practice is to take part in a morning exercise period—a time for the performance of a stretching routine. Unfortunately, exercise alone can not prevent the damage that is caused by the straining of an eye muscle, such as asthenopia.  

A helpful exercise might be to put your own work under the microscope, like a scientist does.  A good scientist chooses to look away from the scope repeatedly, in order to record any observation.  For that reason, his or her eye muscles enjoy a repeated “break.” The use of breaks serves to limit the degree to which any eye might become strained.

Easy Ways To Overcome Eye Strain and other RSS at Work


  • Vision and even ear problems both develop following the recurrence of certain workplace situations. Some employees undergo repeated exposure to loud sounds. A wise employer provides employees with ear protection, if loud sounds ever become an essential part of any duty that must be performed by the typical worker.
  • An employee who must spend long hours at an office computer could also develop eye strain. Office workers can avoid eye strain if they use eye drops, if they blink often, if they practice relaxing their eyes and if they use the correct type of eyewear (such as glasses or contact lenses).
  • Outside of an office, there are other places where a worker might subject his or her eyes to repeated strain. A laboratory employee might need to read a monitor screen. If the laboratory lighting created a glare on that screen, then anyone looking at that screen could feel the effects of the glare. Periodic glances at a glaring screen could encourage the development of eyestrain symptoms.
  • An employee should not hesitate to seek relief from such a glare. Yet, if scheduling demands remove the employee’s hope for a generous amount of relief, then he or she should follow the preventive techniques named above. An employee that must look at a glaring screen should consider purchasing and using eye drops. Such a worker should schedule times when his or her eyes can take a rest, even if they only rest long enough to blink.


By using such techniques, an employee can manage to prevent a run-in with eye strain problems.