Digital Eye Strain – Symptoms, Causes and Prevention Tips

digital eye strain

What Is Digital Strain?

Temporary discomfort following two or more hours use of a digital device is digital eye strain. An array of electronic devices can result in digital eye strain when used simultaneously or when switching devices repeatedly, including television, computers, smartphones, tablets and games systems.

Symptoms of Digital Eye Strain

  • Eye irritation or redness in eyes

  • Fatigue in eyes

  • Blurred vision

  • Pain in the neck, back, and shoulder

  • Headaches

Causes of Strain

No single behavior causes digital strain to the eyes. Many problems can result in irritation and severe discomfort. A few digital devices often have pixelated images and small text size that is often difficult to read. We can also use the devices holding them incorrectly far from the proper angle. Another cause of digital eye strain is blue light, known as ‘high-energy visible light’ (HEV). The digital devices emit it which makes the eye more strained than any other color. It also can contribute to vision difficulties like cataracts and macular degeneration related to age.

Many culprits are responsible for the digital eye strain. We usually blink around 18 times per minute on average, but we blink much less when looking around a screen for a significant period. That makes your eyes dry, itchy or burning. Posture and ergonomics in the workplace contribute. Emerging research also points the finger to blue light, which can damage the retinal cells and lead to age-associated macular degeneration (AMD) and cumulative and constant cataract exposure, as well as to the portion of the light between UV and visible light.

Who Are at Risk?

 You will most likely experience digital eye strain if you have a computer-oriented job. A study carried out in 2014 revealed that employees working on a computer most often undergo changes in their tear fluid, like those with dry eye disease, and experience eye strain. Your age is also an indicator that your digital eye strain is more of a risk. In contrast to most eye problems, young people are the most affected. Millennials report symptoms of digital eye strain by a large majority, almost 70 percent. This is more than Baby Boomers (57 %) and Gen Xers (63 %). If at any point in your life you feel strain in your eyes causing utter discomfort it is better to consult an eye doctor in OKC.

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Tips to Reduce Digital Eye Strain

The most important thing to prevent or treat your computer vision problems is an extensive routine examination of the eye. In more than a year, if your eye examination has not taken place, plan a visit with an eye doctor in OKC.

Excessive light from outside sunlight through a window and from harsh interior light often causes eye strain. When you use a computer, the ambient light in most offices should be about half as bright.

Flashy, reflective walls and finished surfaces and reflections on your computer screen can also strain the eye. Consider installing an anti-glare filter on the screen and paint a darker color with a matt finish, if possible, instead of bright white walls.

Changing your computer's display settings can help reduce eye strain and tiredness. In general, it is helpful to adjust brightness, text size, and contrast and color temperature.

When you work on a computer, blinking is very important; it moisturizes your eyes to prevent dry eyes and irritation.

Focusing fatigue is another reason for computer eye strain. Exercise, moving around and just taking a break to rest your eyes or look at other things reduces the risk of your eyes spasming after prolonged computer work.

Take regular breaks during your computer work day, to reduce your risk of vision syndrome and neck, back and shoulder pain.

Our eye doctor in OKC at Korber Eyecare can help you to combat digital eye strain and keep your vision healthy.

**Disclaimer: The above post should not substitute medical advice nor does it create a patient-doctor relationship.