Screen time and eye strain
As screen use in the workplace and in the home continues to rise so does the number of people complaining of eye strain. Although there is no reliable clinical evidence to suggest that even long-term intensive use of screens causes any permanent eye damage people often experience temporary discomfort that can lead to reduced productivity, lost work time and reduced job satisfaction.
Temporary eye and vision problems related to screen use are often referred to as ‘screen fatigue’.
Common symptoms of screen fatigue include:
- Tired eyes
- Irritated, itchy or sore eyes
- Blurred vision
- Headaches and neck ache
- Dry eyes
- Contact lens discomfort
- Temporary inability to focus clearly on distant objects after screen use.
Although screen fatigue is a widespread problem – as many as 90 per cent of screen users experience the symptoms, it can be avoided. Protecting your eyes when using a screen can be as easy as changing the position or location of your monitor. So, even if you haven’t experienced any visual discomfort when using your computer or device, following Eye Health UK’s hints and tips for setting up an eye-friendly workstation can help you to minimise the risks of experiencing problems.
Tips to have a digital detox:
- Every 20 minutes look 20 feet away for 20 seconds. Keep blinking regularly too and this helps the eyes focus at a distance far away and help lubricate the eyes.
- Eye drops help lubricate your eyes using artificial tears, especially if your eyes are tired from using computers long hours in the day.
- Use anti-glare filters on your computer screen as it helps cut down on digital eye strain.
- Position your computer screen monitor properly so that the top of the screen is just below eye level. This also helps with neck pain.
- Adjusting your computer screen brightness helps reduce digital eye strain. If you hold up a blank white piece of paper next to your monitor, adjust the brightness of the screen to how the paper looks.
- Blue light coating to your spectacles helps reduce eye fatigue.
- Give your eyes a break from contact lenses and wear your spectacles. Contact lenses stay soft by absorbing the tears. Your tears evaporate faster when wearing contact lenses as you stare at the screen.