Considering how much time the average person spends looking at a screen these days, whether it be a phone, computer, tablet, television, or otherwise, it’s a wonder that we don’t hear more about eye strain. Eye strain due to screen time overuse (sometimes known as computer vision syndrome or digital eye strain) is a very common condition. While it can result from non-digital causes like reading a book or looking at the road during a long drive, it has become heavily associated with screen time in recent years. Our eye care experts wanted to provide some tips for how to manage and treat eye strain.
Eye strain typically causes discomfort and fatigue in the eyes. Common eye strain symptoms include watery eyes, blurred vision, itchiness or dryness, eye twitching, sensitivity to light, headaches, or even discomfort in the neck and shoulder areas. People with prior eye conditions, including uncorrected vision or a muscle imbalance in the eyes, may be at a greater risk of eye strain. Additionally, general stress and fatigue can also contribute to eye strain.
In most cases, eye strain can be managed by making certain lifestyle changes. Wearing glasses (instead of contact lenses) during extended periods of screen time may help. There are also special lenses, glass coating, and tinting that can help. It’s important to take breaks and give your eyes a moment to relax. We recommend adhering to the 20-20-20 rule. This rule advises people to take a 20-second break to look at something that is 20 feet away from them every 20 minutes. Additionally, adjusting the lighting in your room or office to reduce glare and using a humidifier can help as well.
If these issues persist after attempting these adjustments, it may be time to speak with a board-certified ophthalmologist or optometrist like the experts here at Georgia Eye Physicians & Surgeons. Coming in for annual comprehensive eye exams can help detect potential vision issues that might make a person more vulnerable to eye strain. During the exam, make sure to discuss how often you use a computer and other digital devices during a normal day. In some cases, we may prescribe medical eye drops that can help people who experience chronic eye strain. HydroEye solution can often be extremely helpful. Additionally, we may determine if a patient would benefit from special eyewear designed to reduce and limit eye strain. This can include specialized lenses with certain coatings and tints that can often be highly beneficial.
If you experience chronic eye strain and think that our eye care services can help, please don’t hesitate to reach out. For more information or to book an appointment with our expert ophthalmologist, Dr. William Segal, or optometrist, Dr. Marc Lay please contact Georgia Eye Physicians & Surgeons today. You can follow along with us on Facebook for more patient stories, eye care tips, and much more. Don’t forget to ask us about our new eye surgery center in Lawrenceville.