Digital eye strain is a modern phenomenon that occurs by sitting and staring at a computer or device screen for an extended period of time. Symptoms can include headaches, visual fatigue, and a dry blinking feeling after a few hours of focused screen gazing. Eye care professionals call it “computer vision syndrome” (CVS). Although everyone can be affected, people who wear contacts or glasses tend to encounter digital eye strain more frequently than non-wearers.
If you’ve noticed your eyes are struggling because of digital strain, here are three quick things you can do to help you avoid the problem:
- Blink Regularly –The average human blinks about 25 times every minute without any thought. This automatic reflex keeps our eyes clean and moisturized, but when it comes to intensive screen work, we tend to blink far less than normal. Next time you’re deep into your onscreen work, be mindful of this fact and make it a priority to keep blinking.
- Take a Break – Follow the 20/20/20 rule: it’s a good idea to take your eyes off the screen every 20 minutes, look at something at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. You may also want to stand up and stretch your body for a few moments.
- Posture and Position – How you are sitting and viewing your screen is as important for your eye health as blinking and taking breaks are. Relax your shoulders to minimize the strain on your neck, back, and shoulders. Try not to hunch over your keyboard or lean your face too close to the computer. Ergonomically, your eyes should be about an arm’s length away from the screen, with the top of the screen about 4 inches below your eyes as you look straight ahead.
If you are unable to avoid the eye strain with these three simple adjustments, it may be time to talk to an optometrist about your eye care needs. There’s much that can be done. Call us at our Temecula office at (951) 302-1331 or our Murrieta office at (951) 600-9226 to schedule an appointment.