Computers serve as a quick and convenient way to get things done. For example, you easily can do everything from typing documents, designing slide shows and presentations, to creating your own music or art. You also can access useful information and media on the Internet. For these reasons people rely heavily on computers, especially at places like offices, schools, hospitals and at home. Unfortunately, using computers can also bring many negative effects for your overall health.
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Computer use can result in vision problems called Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Glare on the computer screen, the reduced level of contrast of text to the background, and letters not being as sharp, or clear as on print create problems. This can put more stress on your eyes. Symptoms of CVS include eye strain, blurred vision, headaches and dry eyes. These symptoms are only temporary and begin to lessen when you're not using the computer.
Physical Health Issues
People who have used the computers for an extensive period of time may complain about headaches, and pains in their wrists, arms and necks. These pains are often the result of a fixed posture when using the computer keyboard for a long amount of time. This can also cause muscle pain due to fatigue. Use good posture and take breaks when typing on the computer.
Exposure to Radiation
Many computers have CRT, or Cathode Ray Tube, monitors that give off X-ray radiation that can affect your health. Being exposed to computer radiation can cause cancer, tumours, miscarriage and birth defects, headaches and insomnia. The FDA requires that a computer and TV monitors meet a radiation limit. However, they still give off a small amount of radiation. You can avoid exposing yourself to this radiation by limiting your time using the computer or by increasing your distance from the computer.
Computers also give you access to a wide variety of information and entertainment. People who use computers for this reason, which develop a computer addiction. This may cause a person to become addicted to online activities like reading articles and researching for fun, playing online games, visiting chat rooms, gambling or even pornography or cybersex. This can cause the person to lie about their online habits and activities, neglect family and social events and academic failure. Strong addiction may require sufferers to seek professional therapy.
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- Environmental Protection Agency: Television and Computer Screens
- Southern California College of Optometry: Negative Effects of Computer Use
- American Optometric Association: Computer Vision Syndrome
- Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery: Internet Addiction
- University of Western Australia: Safety & Health; Computer Workstation Ergonomics