Computers are used daily at work or at school, cell phones allow you to have the internet in the palm of your hand anywhere and anytime. All of this technology usage can put a lot of strain on your eyes, which can cause other health issues for you.

See below for digital eye strain symptoms and prevention tips.

Digital Eye Strain Symptoms

Digital eye strain, or Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) occurs when your eyes strain from staring at any type of digital device (computer, cell phone, laptop or tablet). The strain happens when you stare too long at these devices, as you don't blink as often as you normally would, leaving you with dry, tired eyes. Some of the symptoms of digital eye strain include:

  • Headaches
  • Dry and/or red, irritated eyes
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain
  • Fuzzy vision (especially when you look away from the screen)
  • Fatigue

If you wear contact lenses, digital eye strain can cause issues with your lenses, such as lenses drying out. It can also lead to astigmatisms.

If you are in front of a computer screen often, talk to your optometrist at Absolute Vision Care about different lenses that are more breathable to help prevent dryness. 

Digital Eye Strain Prevention Tips

You can prevent digital eye strain by taking care of your eyes, and by using your technology properly.

  • Look away. Look away from the computer screen (or other screen) every 20 minutes or so to give your eyes a break, re-wet your eyes by blinking, and to recharge. Try to look away for at least 20 seconds. If needs be, get up and walk away from the screen. If you can get up and walk away, stretch your neck and back while away from your desk.
  • Clean your screen. If your screen is dusty, dirty or has smudges, it may make you squint or strain your eyes to see the screen properly. Clean it with a soft, damp cloth.
  • Reduce glare. Change lighting around the room in order to reduce glare on your screen, which can make you strain to see as well. If you can't change the lighting, change direction for your screen if you can.
  • Adjust screen brightness. If you have a dim screen, it can make it difficult to see. Increase the brightness to help you see better.
  • Move the screen away. Your screen (computer, phone, etc.) should be at least an arm’s length away. If using a cell phone, hold it at eye level, rather than looking down at the phone, which can cause neck strain.
  • Give your eyes a break. Contact lenses, even those that are more breathable, can cause your eyes to dry out, increasing eye strain. Give your eyes a break by taking out those lenses and wearing glasses instead. 
  • Perform eye exercises. Blink your eyes to help moisten them, roll your eyes around, move them from one side to the other, and massage your temples to help your eyes relax. 
  • Get regular eye exams. Getting regular eye exams can help prevent other vision issues and prevent further eye strain from continued use of digital devices.

Digital eye strain is a big issue with people both young and old with so much technology within our reach.

In a digital age, it's imperative for you to take good care of your eyes in order to prevent this eye strain. Make an appointment with Absolute Vision care today for an eye exam and check-up.

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