Posted on: November 25, 2008 Posted by: Nicole Harding Comments: 0

Screen glare is not only annoying but it can also cause you a really bad headache or severe eye strain after some time. If you stay in front of your computer for several hours daily, screen glare should be a big concern.

What is Screen Glare?

Screen glare is the reflection of a light source, natural or artificial, on a computer monitor. It can be caused by the sunlight coming from your window or door, or by your lights in your home or office.

Screen glare is formed when the computer monitor is placed at an angle where it directly reflects light from a source: for example, your monitor facing the window, behind you. When sunlight passes through your window, it reflects off the computer screen, then causes the glare.

Dangers of Screen Glare

Staying in front of a computer monitor is already a huge concern since it causes eyestrain after several hours of continuous use. With screen glare in the picture, eyestrain and headaches even become more prevalent.

Staring at a screen for long hours plus a nasty reflection you constantly see in front of you will surely cause productivity problems, not to mention the painful effects of eye strain and a really bad headache.

Preventing Screen Glare

It is very easy to prevent or even get rid of screen glare. It is just a matter of placing the computer monitor at a right location and angle where it won’t reflect light from a bright light source.

If there are windows in the room, ideally, the monitor must be placed at least at a 90 degree angle against the window. This applies to just about any bright light source.

The most common source of screen glare in the office comes from the lighting in the office. In most cases, the light source is directly above the monitor. This almost causes a permanent screen glare. In such situations, the following steps can be done:

  • Move the monitor further so that the light is not directly above it.
  • Switch off that particular light and replace it with a desk lamp.
  • If switching off is not possible, dimming the light will greatly help.
  • If the light is not equipped with a dimmer, a monitor filter will greatly help reduce screen glare.

Screen Glare from the Monitor

Screen glare can also occur even when the monitor is placed properly. It can happen when the monitor’s contrast and brightness settings are set too bright. Though every user prefers different settings, when you think that the screen is just too bright for you, it is best that you adjust it down to the settings that are comfortable to you eyes.

Modern monitors can easily have those settings adjusted by using the buttons or knobs at the side or bottom of the screen. Tinkering with color temperature settings and gamma settings can also produce a comfortable view.

Other Solutions

Though it is quite easy to get rid of screen glare, there are other things you must do in order to avoid having effects like eyestrain and headaches. Here are some of them:

  • Maintain a proper distance. Make sure that you are at least 16 inches away from your monitor. This helps prevent the effects of screen glare that comes directly from the monitor.
  • Take frequent short breaks. Working long hours in front of a computer without taking breaks is definitely not good for your eyes. You don’t have to leave your seat if you want to take a break. Simply look at a distant object away from your monitor for at least 20 seconds every 20 minutes or less.
  • Keep the monitor at eye level. Your monitor should be level with your eyes. Too low or too high may cause heavy strain on your eyes, as well as your back, shoulders, and neck. If you can’t adjust the position of the monitor, adjust the chair you are sitting on by either moving it up or down.
  • Use a monitor filter. Even if you think that you don’t suffer from screen glare, it is a good idea to invest in screen or monitor filters. These devices effectively reduce glare and make it easier on your eyes.
  • Reduce amount of lighting. If possible, reduce the amount of light in your workplace. If the window is a the source of the bright light, try partially closing it or use curtains, drapes, or blinds.

The paint in the room you work in is also a contributing factor to screen glare since light from other sources bounces off it. It will surely help if you switch to non-glossy type of paints so that lesser light will be reflected off the surfaces of your walls.

Computers greatly help us become more efficient and productive, as well as providing modern forms of entertainment. However, we must not forget that they may cause us some harm in the process. Though it may be a price we have to pay for making our lives easier, there are many ways to avoid harming ourselves, or at least, reducing these effects.

Getting rid of screen glare is just one way to make such problems be more tolerable and conducive for long usage.

If you already suffer headaches and eyestrain often and have done the necessary corrections mentioned here, do not forget to get your eyes checked just to be sure. You may need corrective glasses or wear glare reduction lenses.

Click here for more information about how to get rid of a screen glare

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