Is Digital Eye Strain Effecting You?
The facts are disturbing: Eighty three percent of children and seventy percent of adults report burning, itchy, or tired eyes after using electronic devices for extended periods. According to an American Optometric Association (AOA) survey, kids between the ages of 10-17 report that they use electronic devices for three or more hours daily and experience symptoms of digital eye strain. Digital Eye Strain is defined as the physical discomfort experienced after two or more hours of staring at a screen. Symptoms include dry, red or irritated eyes, blurred vision, double vision, loss of focus, fatigued eyes and back, neck or shoulder pain. You may also experience headaches. These symptoms are not permanent and should dissipate after you discontinue use of digital devices. That said, there could be long term damage as a result of digital eye strain.
Here’s what you should know to help you reduce the likelihood of having long term damaging effects of digital eye strain:
- Always be sure to use the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
- Check the height and position of the digital device. Laptop and computer screens should be four to five inches below a user’s eye level and 20-28 inches away from their eyes.
- Make sure your workstation is optimized for your eyes with proper lighting and seat adjustments.
- Check for screen glare. Keep devices out of direct light and consider adjusting your screen’s brightness or background color.
- Adjust font size. Increasing the font size on your device is easier on the eyes.
- This sounds silly, but it is the simplest thing you can do for your eyes – remember to blink! Staring at devices can dry our your eyes. In severe cases, causing chronic dry eyes.
If you find yourself suffering from the symptoms of digital eye strain, set up an appointment with Dr. Tess to go over your eye care options. Call (231) 622-4779 to set up your appointment.