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How to Reduce Eye Strain from Screens

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A young businessman, tired and overworked, removes his glasses and rubs his tired, dry eyes after spending long hours working on his computer late into the night.

Screens have become integral to our daily lives, whether for work or leisure. From smartphones and laptops to TVs and tablets, we spend countless hours staring at screens. However, prolonged screen time can lead to eye strain, a common problem that affects people of all ages.

Dry eyes, blurred vision, headaches, and neck and shoulder pain often characterize eye strain. It can also cause fatigue, difficulty focusing, and increased sensitivity to light. If left unaddressed, eye strain can lead to more serious vision problems.

Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to help reduce eye strain from screens, including:

  • Adjusting screen brightness and contrast
  • Positioning the screen at an appropriate distance
  • Taking frequent breaks
  • Equipping proper lighting in the room
  • Using blue light filters or glasses
  • Regular eye exams
  • Eye exercises

Adjusting Screen Brightness & Contrast

One of the main causes of eye strain from screens is glare, which can be caused by excessive brightness or contrast on the screen. To reduce glare, it’s important to adjust the brightness and contrast settings on your device. In general, a slightly lower brightness and contrast level is better for your eyes.

You can also consider using the “night mode” feature on your device, which reduces blue light emission, making it easier on the eyes.

Positioning the Screen at an Appropriate Distance

The distance between your eyes and the computer screen is key to avoiding eye strain. The screen should be about an arm’s length away to keep your eyes comfortable. Also, place the screen below eye level so you can look at it at a slight angle. This not only reduces eye strain but also helps improve your posture, making more extended periods of screen use more comfortable.

Taking Frequent Breaks

Looking at a screen too much can tire your eyes out and make you feel overall fatigue. It’s important to prevent this by taking regular breaks. A good way to do this is to follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

Also, try to take a longer break, at least 10 minutes, every hour to help lower the risk of eye strain and fatigue. This gives your eyes a chance to rest and recover.

Equipping Proper Lighting

Good lighting is key to reducing eye strain and keeping your eyes healthy. Too much or too little light can cause glare, making it hard to focus on the screen. Make sure your room has enough light, and use a desk lamp or overhead light to aim light right where you need it. This can help avoid eye strain and make looking at screens more comfortable.

A close-up of a woman's eyes behind glasses designed to protect against blue light and screen glare while working at a computer.

Using Blue Light Filters or Glasses

The blue light from screens is known to cause eye strain and disrupt sleep. To lessen these effects, people can use blue light filters or special glasses that block this light. Many devices now come with built-in blue light filters, making it easier to reduce exposure.

Additionally, if you spend a lot of time in front of screens, buying glasses made for screen use can help protect your eyes and avoid the adverse effects of blue light.

Regular Eye Exams

It’s important to have regular eye exams with an optometrist, even if you don’t wear glasses. Optometrists can spot eye problems you might not know about and give tips on reducing eye strain, a common issue in our screen-heavy world.

They can also prescribe glasses or contacts to protect your eyes from screen damage. This proactive step helps keep your eyes healthy and can prevent future problems.

Eye Exercises

Like any other muscle, your eyes need exercise to stay strong and healthy. You can try exercises that involve moving your eyes in different directions, such as tracing shapes with your gaze or rolling your eyes in a circular motion. Additionally, taking breaks to look away from screens and focusing on faraway objects can help relax your eye muscles and reduce strain.

Discover Comprehensive Eye Care at Dr. Henslick Vision Center

Our increasing reliance on screens in today’s digital world has made caring for our eye health more important than ever. With proper care and attention, we can maintain healthy vision for years.

Dr. Henslick Vision Center offers comprehensive eye exams and personalized treatment plans to help keep your eyes healthy. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and learn more about protecting your eyes from the harmful effects of blue light.

Your eyes are important to your overall health and should not be neglected. So remember to take breaks, use protective eyewear, and visit your optometrist regularly for optimal eye health!

Written by Total Vision

At Total Vision, we pride ourselves on ensuring healthy eyes for the whole family and work hard to help all our patients look, feel, and see better. With many locations throughout California, we continue to set new industry standards for professionalism and quality. We empower all our partners to offer leading-edge testing, treatment, and eyewear. With the support of our entire network behind each care provider, patients all over the state can enjoy consistent quality and incredible value.
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