Literature from international and national sources has been reviewed to establish whether there is evidence that vision is affected by computer use. The sources used include electronic databases, referred articles, brochures, policy documents and conference presentations. The ocular function of computer users was also evaluated against Hazpak Occupational Health and Safety criteria.
The literature revealed that visual discomfort was caused by ocular and environmental problems. The ocular problems included a transient increase in accommodation, inappropriate focal length of spectacles and reduced lacrimation. The environmental factors included “time on task”, surround luminance, screen qualities, screen position and document source position, as well as screen distance and work station contamination. The Hazpak analysis of risk of vision problems caused by computer use, revealed a low level of importance and low risk.
Strategies to support vision comfort included appropriate spectacle correction (focal length and single focus lenses), managing “time on task” to reduce stress on ocular function, actions to decrease dry eyes, and ensuring screen qualities assist easy visual appreciation and comfort of viewing. It is concluded that computer users may experience vision discomfort but this can be managed with appropriate vision treatment and judicious attention to environmental issues.