What are Computer Glasses?

What are Computer Glasses?

What are computer glasses? Computer screen glasses are prescription glasses made specifically to help your eyes focus while working on a computer. Glasses for computer screen use are different from both eyeglasses and reading glasses in a number of ways, including:

  • The Zone of Vision: When working on a computer, you’re typically positioned 20 to 26 inches away from it – which is considered the intermediate zone of vision. This distance is closer than driving (distant) vision, but farther away than reading (near) vision.
  • Magnification: Computer glasses can be up to 60% more powerful than reading glasses. Magnification can be adjusted according to how far you sit from your computer screen.
  • Vision Correction: The optical center of each lens is measured to sit precisely in front of the pupils so the glasses can correct any astigmatism you may have.
  • Improved Posture: Computer glasses minimize the need to tilt your head in order to view the computer screen, improving your posture and providing the largest viewing angle possible without straining your neck.

For these reasons, computer glasses should be customized for your individual needs. Using non-prescription eyeglasses won’t offer the protection or comfort needed for working on a computer. Schedule an eye exam before purchasing computer glasses. Our eye care experts can help find and prescribe the best fit for your eyes.

Different Types of Computer Glasses

Depending on your vision and how you work on a computer screen, there are several types of computer glasses to choose, such as:

  • Occupational Progressive Lenses: This is a multifocal solution that corrects near, intermediate and distance vision, providing you with largest field of vision.
  • Monofocal Lenses: These are single-vision glasses designed to provide the appropriate optical correction for your intermediate zone of vision or the distance between you and the computer screen. This will allow you to view the entire computer screen with minimum head tilting. You can also view multiple screens by simply moving your eyes rather than having to tilt your head or turn your body.
  • Bifocal Lenses: Our doctors can write a prescription so that the upper segment of your bifocal glasses are set up for computer screen distance and the lower is designed for near vision or reading fine print.
  • Trifocal Lenses: Trifocal glasses provide three segments for far, near and intermediate vision.

Aside from the type of computer glasses you want to use, you can also add features for added comfort and vision support, including:

  • Antireflective Coating: Also referred to as antiglare coating, it eliminates reflections of light from your lenses for reduced eye strain and to prevent glare from overhead lighting.
  • Photochromic Lenses: Ideal for both indoor and outdoor use, these lenses can help protect your eyes from computer strain, blue light emitted from digital screens and harmful UV rays by automatically darkening in the sunlight.

Benefits of Computer Glasses

Computer glasses used to be recommended for people over 35 years of age to help focus their vision on the screen. Now that digital technology is used more frequently, the general population could benefit from using computer glasses, at any age. Advantages of wearing glasses for computer use include:

  • Reduces Computer Vision Syndrome: Computer glasses can help protect your eyes from strain and fatigue caused by computer vision syndrome.
  • Good Posture: Glasses for computer use provide the clear vision you need to view your screen, minimizing the need to hunch or tilt your head to focus.
  • Minimizes Glare: When paired with antireflective coating, computer glasses can minimize glare caused by the computer screen.
  • Protection from Blue Light: Computer glasses with a blue light filter can protect your eyes from harmful blue light radiation transmitted from digital screens.

Computer Glasses vs. Blue Light Glasses

Prescription computer glasses are often confused with blue light glasses. While most over-the-counter glasses filter out blue light, they don’t provide the same benefits as prescription computer glasses. Blue light is emitted from digital screens, including your smartphone, computer, TV and tablet. Blue light can disrupt your sleep and may cause permanent damage to your vision as some studies have suggested. Computer glasses with a blue light filter provide the best protection as they can help block blue light emitted from screens and offer comfort from digital eye strain.

Computer Vision Syndrome

Blurred vision, redness and eye fatigue are all symptoms of computer vision syndrome. When you stare at a screen for a prolonged amount of time, your eyes have to work hard to adapt to the wavelengths being emitted. Computer vision syndrome isn’t one specific problem but a range of symptoms, including:

  • Eye discomfort
  • Headaches
  • Itchy eyes
  • Dry or watering eyes
  • Burning sensations
  • Changes in color perception
  • Blurred vision
  • Difficulty focusing

Research has shown that between 50% to 90% of people who work on computer screens will experience symptoms of computer vision syndrome. Working adults are not the only ones susceptible to these symptoms. Children who spend long hours using computers for school or playing video games may also experience these side effects. Wearing glasses to protect your eyes from the computer screen can help reduce some of these unwanted symptoms.

An Interrupted Sleep Cycle

Exposing your eyes to any light, especially light from a screen, has the power to interrupt your sleep cycle. Light can suppress your melatonin levels , and consequently affects your circadian rhythms – which are responsible for guiding your body to fall asleep and wake up. If you’re engaging in nighttime activities, like watching TV, playing video games or reading on a tablet, help protect your eyes with a pair of computer glasses, so you don’t miss out on a good night’s rest.

Computer Screen and Permanent Eye Damage

Staring at a computer screen for more than two consecutive hours a day can lead to computer vision syndrome or worsen existing eye conditions. Common eye problems that can contribute to eye strain during computer use are:

  • Refractive errors like farsightedness or myopia
  • Inadequate focusing of the eyes or eye coordination problems
  • Aging eyes, including the development of presbyopia

Where Can I Buy Computer Glasses?

If you’re wondering how to get computer glasses, book an appointment at your local Pearle Vision EyeCare Center. Our eye care experts can examine your eyes for any existing conditions, write a prescription and help you order a pair glasses to protect your eyes from computer screens.


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