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Dealing with Zoom fatigue

It's called Zoom fatigue and tech experts say it's a real issue. Newswatch 16's Sarah Buynovsky spoke with a teacher & tech expert about what we can do to battle it.

MOOSIC, Pa. — It is called Zoom fatigue: that physical and mental stress that comes from using video platforms like Zoom over and over again, something many of us have done over this pandemic.

“It is definitely real, it is definitely real, and it’s one of those things that has evolved from the current situation, the current global pandemic, and we do have to be aware of it," said Fred Aebli, a professor and tech expert from Penn State Scranton.

Stanford researchers have found that Zoom fatigue is a real thing and affecting people’s mental, emotional and physical health: from too much eye strain and contact to reduced movement and mobility.

Aelbli said it something he and his students are experiencing, and there are some things that can help.

“One of the things you can do, jas you can see, I’m at a standing desk. I love my standing desk, I can raise and lower it, but it also gives me the freedom to use my body language. This is known as a gaze; we’re gazing at each other.”

Researchers discovered that amount of close-up eye contact on Zoom and other platforms is intense and can cause physical and mental stress.

So make sure you are a good distance away from your monitor; maybe use the gallery mode, so you see several people at once, not just one.

They also found that there is stress from seeing yourself on screen for long periods of time.

“We are constantly evaluating ourselves. That’s something we don’t do on a normal basis, but that’s a cognitive overload and what you can do is turn off that mode," said Aebli.

He added Zoom fatigue is real and a problem, but it is also an opportunity to improve the technology that has become so useful for so many.

“Like a lot of tech, I think we’re in an evolutionary phase. We’re at the very beginning, and we have to be patient with that.”

For more information on Zoom fatigue, click here.