There are many advantages to the evolution of our digital technology. Through the screens of our tablets, computers, and cell phones we have instant access to information, various forms of entertainment, and the ability to stay in touch with family and friends.
As a result of our dependence on technology, more people than ever before are feeling the effects of digital eye strain.
The Signs and Symptoms of Digital Strain
When you first noticed the signs of digital eye strain, you may not have realized that your electronic screens were likely the cause. More than half of those surveyed who spend a lot of time in front of a computer screen, report the uncomfortable symptoms of eye strain. The symptoms of digital eye strain include:
- Tired, aching eyes
- Eyes that feel scratchy or gritty
- Red, irritated eyes
- Eye watering
- Sensitivity to light and wind
- Blurred or double vision
- The inability to wear contact lenses comfortably
Understanding the Cause of Your Pain
Once you recognize the causes of digital strain, you can take steps to alleviate your discomfort. You should know that there are several contributing factors. Some of the causes of digital eye strain include:
- A Reduced Blinking Rate When you read and watch videos or television, your intense focus cause you to blink 66 percent less often. Since blinking keeps your eyes lubricated, it’s easy to understand why focusing on your screen can result in eyes that feel dry and tired.
- Repetitive Eye Movements When you are working at a computer, you may tend to repeat the same eye movements over and over again. You look at the screen; you look at the keyboard, you look at the screen. This repetitive motion causes eye muscle fatigue. Digital screens also add contrast, flicker, and glare to the equation.
- Uncorrected VisionNearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, or inadequate eye coordination can increase the likelihood that you will suffer from digital eye strain. An out-of-date eyeglass or contact lens prescription may increase symptom severity.
- High-Energy Visible Light Your electronic devices emit high-energy visible light (HEV). This blue light is very similar to sunlight but more intense. Besides contributing to digital eye strain, blue light can also increase your risks of developing cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration.
- Glare from Your ScreenThe glare from computer monitors, tablets, cell phone screens and white walls can intensify digital eye strain. While painting walls with a darker matte finish may help, the glare of your screen is a major Investing in anti-glare lenses should help alleviate your discomfort.
Methods of Managing Digital Eye Strain
You can take an active role in minimizing the symptoms of digital eye strain and reduce the potential impact of blue light on your eyes. Consider minimizing eyestrain with the following suggestions:
- Periodically looking across the room to focus on distant objects
- Blinking periodically while reading, working, and gaming to redistribute moisture
- Use artificial tears to combat dryness
- Have regular eye exams to ensure accurate vision correction
- Wear corrective lenses that reduce glare
- Protect your eyes from sunlight with UV protective sunglasses
- Consider wearing glasses with orange/peach lenses to filter blue light from the spectrum
Digital eye strain is uncomfortable, but the symptoms can be managed. To reduce the symptoms, or your risk, of digital eyestrain, you need to protect your eyes from harsh glare and UV exposure. Visit VS Eyewear to view our selection of anti-glare computer glasses. With a few simple precautions and a pair of quality computer glasses, you can minimize the causes and symptoms of digital eye strain.