Computer Vision Syndrome among Library Professionals

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<ul><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>359</p><p>1. Introduction It is not uncommon these days to see library professionals spend a significant part of their day glued to computer screens because the concept of automated and digital library. Computers are now an essential component of all spheres of library housekeeping works such as acquisition, cataloguing, circulation, serial control, digitization and online search etc. In fact, digitization has overtaken library services and demand. Computerized library works and services can have adverse effects on eye health of library professionals. Which cant be seen at the moment but it will badly effect in later age. This may cause of Computer Vision Syndrome.</p><p>Computer Vision Syndrome among Library Professionals</p><p>1 Nitesh Singh Pawar, 2 Mayuri Asalkar, 3 Subodh Kumar Bajpai and 4 Surendra Kumar Soni</p><p>1 Professional Assistant, DA-IICT, Gandhinagar-382007, Gujrat2 Librarian, Choitram International School, Indore-452009, M.P.</p><p>3 Project Assistant-LS, INFLIBNET Centre, Gandhinagar-382421, Gujrat4 Library Trainee, DA-IICT, Gandhinagar-382007, Gujrat</p><p>E-mail: niteshsinghpawar@gmail.com, charmi.singh10@gmail.com, kumarsubodh779@gmail.com, sonisurendra43@gmail.com</p><p>ABSTRACTThe most widespread problem in computer use today is not carpal tunnel syndrome, nor is it those nagging problems of the upper back, neck, or shoulders. According to the National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH), The number one cause of high levels of fatigue, errors at work and lost days of production is eye strain. NIOSH studies indicate that if you work at a computer for more than 3 hours a day, you may be among the 88 percent who suffer from eyestrain. Our Nation has moved from a manufacturing society to an information society, computer vision syndrome has become a workplace concern specially among library fraternity. While prolonged computer use will not damage vision, it can make you uncomfortable and decrease productivity and efficiency.</p><p>Keywords: Computer vision syndrome, Eyes, Library professionals health, Vision Deficits, Eye and vision problems, Visual Fatigue syndrome, Computers fatigue, Library professionals.</p></li><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>360</p><p>2. What is basically Computer Vision and Visual Fatigue Syndrome is ?: Generally people who spend more than two hours on a computer each day may experience symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome. It is also called Visual Fatigue because, it is actually not restricted to computer use but crops up in other contexts as well. However, with societys ever increasing use of computers, smart phones, tablets and other screen-based media devices, screen time is mostly responsible for the condition. Today Library professionals have to deal with electronic resources, online reference services and database management systems they have to sit for long hours in front of computers screen to manage most of the daily routines and slowly they will be effected by so called Computer Vision Syndrome, which can effect them in present lifestyle and badly in later life.</p><p>3. Definition: Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) refers to the vision problems that result from prolonged computer use. They are usually caused by a combination of improper seating posture, poor lighting in the room, glare from the computer screen, sitting too close or too far from the screen, and uncorrected eye health disorders.</p><p>4. Symptoms of Computer Vision Syndrome:The Most Common Symptoms of CVS Among Library Professionals are:</p><p> Headaches Focusing difficulties Burning eyes Tired eyes General eyestrain Aching eyes Dry eyes Double vision Blurred vision Light sensitivity Neck and shoulder pain.</p><p>5. What Library Professionals do to Protect Themselves from Computer Vision Syndrome May be library professionals love to spend more time surfing the net or your job might require you to sit in front of your computers for long hours. Whatever the reason is, your body must be feeling the effects of spending too much time on your computer. Eye and vision problems are most frequently reported health-related problem in library professionals/computer workers, occurring in 75-80 % of such workers. The most common symptoms are eye strain, headache, blurred vision, and neck or shoulder pain. These problems may be exacerbated or may occur more quickly in users who are more then 40 years old, as the flexibility of the lens within the eyes decreases with age. The same is increased among younger generations of library profession at 35+ now a days.</p><p>5.1. Why this is More Dangerous Among Library Professionals: Work that is both visually and physically fatiguing can result in lowered productivity, increased error rate, and reduced job satisfaction. Although vision disorders may initially occur as localized fatigue and subside after work has been discontinued, they often return when work is resumed. Unlike in other form of localized fatigue, in which the muscles are able to accommodate, the visual system has less ability to adapt to the conditions that cause the fatigue. As a result some vision problems become more significant over time and may be further aggravated by poor VDT(video display terminals) design or workplace ergonomics, improper workplace lighting, and further aggravated by poor VDT design or improper workplace lighting, and uncorrected or under corrected vision conditions. Steps should be taken to reduce these deficiencies and thereby reduce the potential for development of stress and discomfort at work place.</p></li><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>361</p><p>5.2. Few Simple Steps to Prevent Computer Vision Syndrome for Library Professionals:Library professionals must set general ergonomic considerations at work place as follows- 1. Monitors should be positioned 20 to 24 inches from the eyes, with the eyes in a downward gaze of </p><p>about 15 degrees when viewing the screen. The top of the screen should be below the horizontal eye level of the operator and tilted backward slightly.</p><p>2. Library professionals who wear bifocals should lower the monitor by 6 inches.3. Library professionals must put Desktop reading material be positioned at a 20-degree incline </p><p>approximately 20 inches away from the eyes (the 20/20 rule). Document holders should be positioned near the computer screen and in the same plane as the screen to avoid eye strain; they should also be frequently alternated between the left and right sides of the screen. Users should rest their eyes frequently by changing their focus from close to distance vision.</p><p>4. Lighting Effect: Avoid the Glair lets see this with few slides how to avoid glairs on your tables.</p><p>Glair effect above</p><p>5. Best Office Setup to Avoid Glair:</p></li><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>362</p><p>6. Library Professionals Must Set Their Computer SettingsLight reflected from the computer screen can reduce contrast and visibility of the display, leading to eye strain. Bright lights in the peripheral field of view, windows, overhead fluorescent lights, and desk lamps can all contribute to glare. A compromise must be struck between the amount of light needed to enhance computer screen visibility and reduce glare, and that needed for other office reading and work tasks. Generally speaking, older individuals require more light than younger individuals; for example, workers 45-50 years of age require twice the light levels of young adults for comfortable work.</p><p>The brightness of the computer screen and that of the surrounding room should be balanced. Lower levels of light are needed for dim-background screens, and higher levels when viewing documents. Lighting levels of 200 to 700 lux (20 to 70 foot candles), as measured at the workstation, are recommended. Additional lighting for reading poor-quality documents may be obtained through the use of a task light. The monitor should be positioned at a 90-degree angle to strong light sources such as windows or bright lights. Computer users should avoid facing an unshaded window, as the difference in brightness between the monitor screen and the area behind it may be very stressful to the eyes. Users should also not face away from the window, as they can then cast shadows on the computer screen. Shades, curtains, or blinds can be used to adjust light levels during the day. Screen brightness and contrast can also be adjusted to balance with room lighting and provide maximum visibility; lowering screen brightness will enhance image stability and reduce character flicker.Anti-glare filters can be placed over the VDT screen to reduce glare and reflections, but these should be considered supplemental and are not a substitute for proper lighting and monitor placement. Furthermore, some filters are ineffective; only those with the seal of acceptance from the AOA have been proven to reduce monitor glare. The ideal color combination for viewing documents is a white background with black letters. Users should avoid using more than four colors on the screen at a time. Strain-producing color combinations include blue and green, and blue and red.</p><p>7. Correction of Existing Vision Deficits: If you think you are experiencing eye strain and have done all you can to enhance your work environment, see your eye doctor for an examination and talk to him or her about prescription eyeglasses designed specifically for computer users. Standard eye examinations do not simulate computer screens; new technology can enable your eye doctor to prescribe glasses that are designed for the way you read text on a computer screen. Special lens coatings can also reduce glare and maximize visual comfort. Be sure to take frequent breaks to get your eyes focused off the screen and into the distance to relax the eye muscles. VDT workers who experience problems with eye focusing or eye coordination that cannot be adequately corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses may require a program of optometric vision therapy designed to treat specific binocular vision dysfunctions.</p><p>8. Give Break to Your Eyes: Library professions must avoid staring at the computers for hours at a stretch. Make sure you take a few minutes break every 2 hours. Just get up from your seat and look away from the system. Stretch your body , arms, and back to rest the muscles of the entire body. Do not eat lunch in front of a computer, make sure your eyes are rested at least as you eat. Hold your daily meeting away from computer screen and best part just take a walk around your workplace for a few minutes to give your eyes, neck and back a break.</p><p>9. Use Anti Fatigue Spectacles Lenses for Library/Computer professionals Getting your glasses customized from your eye specialist will make it easier for you. Contact lenses lose moisture and tend to dry out during prolonged hours of computer work. Crizal Anti-Fatigue lens which comes with Antireflection properties is considered really helpful to reduce eye strain due to computer </p></li><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>363</p><p>screens. Even if you do not wear or need vision correction, you are advised to wear anti fatigue spectacle lenses while at work.</p><p>10. Library professions must Avoid continuous phone talk by seeing computer screens as they generally do for reference and other services 11. Lubricate Your Eyes: The eyes are lubricated when we blink. However when we stay on computers at work normally our normal blinking can get affected. These conditions can cause dry eyes and irritation to the eyes . Blink more often and do not rub your eyes, also drink sufficient water. Its also helps to splash water into the eyes once 2-3 hours, It calms the eyes and hydrates them. Wash your eyes 2-3 times a day every after 3 hours. You can also ask to your doctor for prescribe lubricating eye drops with no side effects.</p><p>12. Beware of Addiction: While it is essential to work at the computers throughout the day, it is not essential to keep your eyes glued to your smart phone just to update your social status on the social network or to send a smile back to friend on Whatsapp or on FB update. Please keep in mind never take them to bed as it will obstructs sleep and denies you some much needed rest every night.</p><p>Above all technology is for you , not for you to addict of that..eyes are most precious thing in this world. And this is for all- see it from your heart</p><p>6. Protect Yourself from Computer Vision Syndrome :- Library professionals must follow the best postures to sit- 6.1. Arial View of Proper Sitting Position : See below. 7. Suggestions &amp; Tips for Library Professionals: Computer Vision Syndrome can be avoided by taking the following simple corrective measures- The top of the monitor screen should be </p><p>level with the straight ahead seeing position. The distance from the viewers eyes to the </p><p>screen should be 45 to 55 cm If the screen is too high, the eyes are wide </p><p>open making the eye susceptible to drying out</p></li><li><p>Re-Defining the Strategic Role of Libraries in Indian Culture and Modern Society</p><p>364</p><p> Reference material should be placed as close as possible to the screen.</p><p> Adjust monitor screen brightness and contrast to a comfortable setting.</p><p> Reflected glare on the monitor screens from overhead lights can be minimized by an anti-glare screen attached to the screen. </p><p> Alternatively turn the screen off and check for any reflections. Move light sources, take out the offending light bulbs, or adjust the position of the screen to minimize reflections.</p><p> Rest breaks are important. Glancing into the distance every 4 or 5 minutes for 1 to 2 seconds will ease eye strain. Get up and walk at least once every 2 hours.</p><p> Consider the use of artificial tears to rewet and lubricate the eyes. Make sure you sit in a comfortable posture and your chair provides comfortable padding for your </p><p>neck and back. Adjust your computer screen in such a way that your head is at a naturally comfortable angle while working.</p><p> Rest your eyes for 15 minutes after two hours of continuous computer use. Also follow the 20-20-20 rule: after every 20 minutes, look 20 feet away into the distance for 20 seconds. This will give your eyes a chance to refocus.</p><p> Use lighting that is neither too dim nor too bright. Also use anti-glare screens to minimize the glare from light sources.</p><p> Make an effort to blink regularly. It will keep your eyes moist and protect your eye health from problems such as dry eyes.</p><p>8. ConclusionLibrary professionals and library professions are the heart of the any organization, they always have to deal with books and references resources which keeps them busy with the small fonts already. Additionally now maximum work of reference services , current awareness services and database management, classification , cataloguing and reprographic services they have to use the technological advances and have to stay long on computers...</p></li></ul>