Question: I recently started having eye problems, especially after changing monitors. Severe eye strain. A friend told me to get special computer glasses which I’ve ordered, but I don’t know if that will be enough to cope with glare and blue light, which seems to be an issue. A question: How to get rid of eye strain – which monitor filter would you recommend to reduce glare and blue light? Or should I just purchase a new monitor that reduces blue light and glare?
Answer: It is worrying to see how many people report substantial increases in eye strain after getting a new monitor. Are new monitors getting worse in terms of eye comfort? I noticed something similar when I uploaded Windows 10 on my old Windows 7 laptop. In three weeks, I was back to Windows 7 to get rid of additional eye strain.
Perhaps the solution for you is to use the old monitor if it still works?
Disclaimer: My interest in how to get rid of eye strain is due to my problems with light sensitivity (photophobia), discomfort glare, and computer eye strain. I am not a vision scientist or medical doctor.
How to get rid of eye strain: Explore your eyes’ sensitivity
I’ll probably disappoint you with my answer: I don’t know what would be best for you – that is because I can’t know. Until you know for sure what is causing it and to what extent, nobody can know how to get rid of your eye strain.
In fact, my eye strain has gotten worse in recent weeks, since I had to change my office. I tried to observe everything that had worked in favor of my eyes comfort, and still… Now I can’t figure out why it is worse :( … so I am trying different things (I’d written about most of them). I am only saying this to invite you to learn about your eyes’ sensitivity and discover what works for your eyes. This site’s only purpose is to help you discover how to get rid of your eye strain faster than you would on your own.
You seem to think the cause of your eye strain is in blue light and glare. Why do you think that changed when you changed your monitor? Aren’t you using it in a similar setting as before? Have you considered other possible causes?
If I were you I’d first wait to receive the computer glasses you’ve ordered – maybe they make your eyes feel much better and help you get rid of your eye strain? If not, you can further explore how to get rid of your eye strain.
I hope you know the spectral transmission properties for those computer glasses. A known spectral transmission is helpful in case you might need to try stronger or weaker blue blockers. Otherwise, you have no solid point of reference to continue your search for eye strain relief.
While you are waiting for your glasses you can check for free if indeed you are more blue light sensitive.
Computer glasses or screen filters?
Presumably the glasses you’ve ordered filter blue light and might also have some power add? With that, they do at least as much or more than a screen protector with similar spectral transmission properties. However, in some circumstances, screen protectors are more suitable or vice versa.
See this overview of screen filters. I don’t have a first-hand experience with many monitor filters. Most of them presume of great reductions of glare and blue light, but spectral transmission data tell a different story. Although, if you are not very blue light sensitive even those that block the least blue light might be helpful.
Eye strain reducing monitors
Researching “monitors that reduce blue light and glare” is difficult because they don’t tend to substantiate their claims with spectral power distribution (SPD) data. Nor is such data available elsewhere on the web.
Since they probably can’t have a very different lighting technology then the rest (if you are thinking OLED, that might be a different story), I am guessing they probably reduce blue light and glare through software manipulation, much like blue light filter apps.
Here is my review of two apps that seem the best on the market. One is free the other costs $5 or $10.
Either way, it might make sense for you to try the app option with your existing monitor before you look into buying another one.
Blue light filter test kit: Best aid to find out if you can get rid eye strain by blocking/reducing blue light
Finally – and maybe I should have put it higher up: If you are not happy with your new computer glasses, you might consider ordering the blue light filter Tester – it will help you make your next purchase much better informed and help you speed up the process of figuring out how to get rid of eye strain.