Computer, smartphone or tablet: a how-to guide to protect your eyes and posture

Spend hours glued to your computer or tablet? Joint and muscle pains, and a little eyestrain are right around the corner. What can you do? Let us sort it out: here is some advice for you that could be useful to adopt a correct posture and avoid damaging your eyes.

Take a break every hour

Starts like this: break up the routine of sitting in front of your computer screen. Take a little relaxing break every hour to relax the muscles as much as possible. It could be a good excuse to walk around while you're on the phone, a trip to the toilet or maybe have a nice big glass of water. Either way, you'll find that at the end of the day your neck muscles will be more flexible and they'll be very grateful.

Keep the screen 70 cm away from the eyes

To avoid damaging your eyes, keep the computer screen between 50 and 70 centimetres from your face. Another tip? Don’t cross your legs or ankles, so your torso won’t be forced to lean forward as much and get “dangerously” close to the monitor.

For correct posture, get an adjustable chair without armrests

If you want perfect posture while sitting at your computer, buy a swivel chair with adjustable height, a reclining back and no armrests. Keep in mind that the ideal distance between your seat and the desk is around 30 centimeters. And if your feet don't reach the floor? That's easily solved by a footrest.

A barrier against blue light

Remember: if your job requires activity in front of a screen, you should get an eye examination to find out if you should wear glasses, and which kind, during work. Please note there are products now specifically designed to increase visual comfort, with lenses that ensure effective protection from smartphones, laptops and more: basically, any device that emits blue light, which is one of the main causes of macular degeneration.

Lower the screen, keep your forearms on the table

Now let’s talk about where you should place the screen and keyboard on the desk. First of all, you must have enough room to rest your forearms. Then, the monitor should be positioned slightly lower than eye level (approximately 15-20° below).

Always adjust contrast and brightness

Other parameters to take into account when you’re working in front of a screen are contrast and brightness. To optimally adjust them, experiment to find the right balance. Don’t forget to eliminate or minimise reflection and glare, because they make reading harder. If possible, place the monitor at least one and a half metres from the window. Finally, the desk, table or countertop you are working from should have a light, non-reflective surface.

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