We are living in an time when it’s almost not possible for most people to avoid using digital devices. Right from young children to grownups, it seems almost everyone is using portable electronic devices and computers.
It is difficult to imagine any professional or student continuing with their profession or academic studies without using one of these devices, particularly computers.
Almost everyone using portable electronic devices or a computer for prolonged hours is exposed to the risk of eyestrain or Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Your age or the kind of experience in handling these devices also comes into play.
Besides the extended hours people spend looking at their electronic devices, the nature of the digital screens themselves contribute to causing increased eyestrain, compared with reading the same information printed on paper.
The reason is that the characters appearing on your computer screen are made of minuscule squares or dots of light, known as pixels. Characters made by using pixels are not as distinct as those made on printed pages. Pixels lack sharpness and density, compared to printed matter.
This also goes for devices using high resolution screens, though the effect may not be so pronounced. It is more difficult for the eyes to remain focused on the text appearing on computer screen, compared to text printed on paper. This becomes all the more significant and risky if you hold the digital device closer to the eyes.
Eye fatigue caused by electronic devices, also referred to as digital eyestrain or computer vision syndrome, is the most widespread problem faced by users who spend prolonged hours in front of the computer screen without taking breaks. Continuous refocusing tires the focusing muscles within the eye, and that is a major contributor of CVS.
Apart from the time you may be spending everyday looking at the computer screen, the other factors contributing to digital eyestrain or CVS may be:
- How near to the computer screen you are sitting or how closely you tend to hold these devices up to your eyes
- What the devices are used for. For instance, action games cause quicker eyestrain, compared to surfing the net or going through an e-book
- How frequently you blink
- How frequently you take breaks when spending long hours staring at a computer screen or mobile device
- If you have any problems relating to your vision. For example, you may suffer from dry eyes or be using the wrong prescription glasses, in which case your chances of eyestrain are higher
Indications and Symptoms
Here are a few symptoms to watch out for that may mean you’re suffering from digital eyestrain:
- Red and or irritated eyes
- Dry eyes
- Blurred vision while looking at the screen or device
- Pain in the neck or back
How to Reduce or Prevent Eye Discomfort
Fortunately, in most cases it is possible to reduce eye fatigue naturally, without taking any medication or resorting to corrective lenses. The best and easiest way to take control of eyestrain caused by using digital devices and computers is to take breaks. Taking frequent breaks, say every 20 to 30 minutes, helps relax your eye muscles. Looking at some distant object reminds you to blink, which really helps reduce symptoms of dry eyes.
Other Measures That Help Reduce Eye Discomfort
- Blink your eyes more often, try to make a conscious effort to do so
- Every 20 to 30 minutes, leave your desk, stretch your body and relax your eyes
- Enhance the font size on your computer screen
- Adjust the level of brightness and contrast on your devices
- Try to use devices with higher resolution screens
- Always keep the device in use at a distance of 10 to 12 inches from your eyes
Other than taking all these precautions and measures to reduce eyestrain caused by CVS, it is very important to maintain a healthy, nutritious diet. There are so many vitamins and minerals in natural foods that help strengthen vision.
However, if you can’t find the time or means to change your diet a little to include the necessary nutrients, there are daily supplements, like our Ocu-Plus Formula, that contain all the amazing vitamins, minerals and herbs needed to keep your eyes healthy, happy and seeing great!