Screen Time May Be Making Your Eyes Tired
Staring at a screen for hours on end can be irritating for your eyes. This can lead to a condition called digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, which results in your eyes becoming tired and uncomfortable. Although it’s referred to as computer vision syndrome, you can develop digital eye strain from viewing any screen for too long, including phones, tablets, and the TV.
While it may be hard for many of us to reduce screen time due to work, school, or entertainment, understanding what may be irritating your eyes can help.
Contact us today if you are experiencing digital eye strain and book an appointment for an exam.
Causes of Digital Eye Strain
Digital eye strain can occur after just 2 hours of consecutive screen time. While viewing a screen for too long can cause symptoms of digital eye strain, there are some causes that can make digital eye strain more likely:
- Pre-existing vision conditions, such as nearsightedness
- Uncorrected vision problems
- A working environment that is not ergonomic
Digital Eye Strain & Childhood
Since the introduction of new digital devices, children’s screen time has drastically increased—sometimes as much as adults. One study found that looking at these screens up close, during “near work” activities could cause an increase in nearsightedness in children, which is on the rise.
It is important to incorporate breaks into children’s screen time to combat digital eye strain. If you think your child may have digital eye strain, a children’s eye exam is recommended.
Solutions for Digital Eye Strain
You may be able to ease the uncomfortable feeling of digital eye strain by applying a few simple solutions.
Visit Your Optometrist
A comprehensive eye exam can determine if corrective lenses are required when you are using your screen. Specialized lenses made specifically for computer use may be recommended to help you see clearly and ease discomfort.
Adjust Your Work Setup
If you work at a desk, your work setup may not be optimized for your body or your eyes to stay comfortable. Your computer should ideally be about 15–20 degrees lower than your eye level and at least 20 inches away from your eyes.
As well, you can prevent glare by positioning your screen away from direct sunlight. Anti-glare screen protectors can help improve discomfort caused by overhead lights or windows reflecting on your screen.
The 20/20/20 Rule
A great way to remember to take frequent breaks during computer use is with the 20/20/20 rule. This golden rule states that every 20 minutes you should look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This gives your eyes time to rest and can help to prevent digital eye strain.
We tend to blink less than we normally would while we’re looking at our screens, but blinking helps keep our eyes moist during computer use. Remember to blink often when on your computer or phone to keep your eyes from drying out—around 15 times per minute!
Where to Find Us
Our main practice can be found in Wasilla, but we perform eye care services all across Alaska. Check out our map to see where you can find us next.