Balancing your screen time and eye health
In these recent times, it seems everyone is using a digital device more often. Through a recent increase in remote work opportunities and virtual learning, you may be thinking more about the affects it may have on your eyes. Eye strain from digital screens are typically referred to as computer vision syndrome, or digital eye strain. Symptoms of eye strain can include eye fatigue, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, eye twitching and neck and shoulder pain.
Even minor vision problems can affect your daily life. Here are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of eye strain and keeping your eyes healthy:
Get a comprehensive eye exam
Your eyes can provide an important window into your overall health. Having a comprehensive eye exam every year is an important step you can take to prevent or treat vision problems caused by digital strain. During your comprehensive eye exam, your doctor will carefully look at all aspects of your eye health and can confirm or rule out any eye diseases or vision problems.
Use the 20-20-20 rule
Take frequent breaks from looking directly at the screen by using the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, focus on an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
Make time for physical activity
The added screen time can mean longer periods of sitting. Take time to go for a short walk, frequently stand up, and stretch your arms, legs, back and neck. Kids should have several opportunities throughout the day for physical activity whether it is playing outside in the yard, going for a bike ride, or doing kid-specific stretches and movement activities (for example jump rope or jumping jacks).
Have proper lighting and a comfortable workstation
Reduce glare on your screen by positioning your monitor away so there is no reflection on the screen. Make sure you are sitting comfortably at your workstation where the lighting is evenly lit and in a comfortable space that reduces poor posture. You should sit 25 inches or at an arm’s length from your device and adjust your height so you are looking slightly downward at your screen.
Adjust your computer display settings
You can change the brightness of your screen, lower the color temperature to help give off less blue light, increase contrast and/or make the text larger to help lessen eye strain.
You can also talk to your eye doctor or optician about available protective lens coatings or blue light-blocking computer glasses to help reduce light exposure and glare. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.