Do your eyes feel a little heavy, tired, burning after extended use of varying technologies? It might be a symptom of Eye Strain. I would not lie if I too, have not yet experienced Eye Strain in this lifetime because clearly; our society is glued to technology, be it in ways of life, work, school; entertainment. It is both fascinating and can sometimes be detrimental if we do not take accountability in taking care of our health; whilst living in a very technologically inclined society.
Combating eye strain, a wildly common condition most people are now experiencing. This article will discuss what it is, its causes, and tips on how you can solve it.
The Medical Side of Eye Strain
Eye Strain, or in a known medical term as Asthenopia is a common medical condition; that occurs when your eyes become tired; sore, or achy. The sensation, discomfort; and pain develop due to the prolonged use of eye muscles that control your eye movements and your pupils. It is certainly annoying and can interfere with activities; but it is not considered a serious medical issue and certainly goes away with non-invasive treatments and prevention. Its symptoms are:
- Sore, burning, itchy, or tired eyes
- Watery or dry eyes
- Double vision, blurry vision
- Increased vulnerability to light
- Difficulty in concentration and paying focused attention
- Feeling that you cannot maintain open eyes
- Sore neck, shoulders, or back
Vision Council Says…
There are a lot of causes for Eye Strains; because it is a condition of prolonged use of our eyes; and it covers a lot of activities that use it, however now; the main cause of Eye Strain is really the extended amount of time we use to look upon our technological devices, mainly computer screens; and cell phones. In a report brought by The Vision Council; more than 87% of people in the United States are on their phones more than two consecutive hours per day; with 76.5% of children looking on their phones or on their pads for more than two consecutive hours per day. It is so prevalent; that it is now called Digital Eye Strain, and it has specific causes relating to it, and these are:
- Maintaining a very poor posture when looking at technological devices
- Failing to blink as often as the normal range
- Holding the technological device too far or too close
- Viewing technological screens with poor and unadjusted lightning
- Extended exposure to blue light emitted by technological devices
Here is the comprehensive list of other Eye Strain causes:
- Focusing on a single task for a long coverage of the time, e.g. reading, driving, sewing, knitting, drawing
- Being exposed to an extremely bright environment, or trying to see in an extremely dark environment
- Being exposed to dry moving air for a long period of time, i.e. fan, heating, or air conditioner
- Working on something that requires undivided attention and maintains focus
- Being stressed, fatigued, burned out
How Do We Solve Eye Strain?
In order to solve eye strain, keep in mind that Eye Strain is not a serious medical condition, and it can be combated with non-invasive treatments and they are:
Look away frequently, or simply adhere to the 20-20-20 rule.
Most Eye Strain is caused by extended use of eyes on certain activities, whether technological or not without a break. In doing so, you should shift your attention to something other than your designated activity when you have passed the time of 20 minutes, what you should shift your attention to is something that is 20 feet away and look for it for at least 20 seconds.
Also, it is important that you not only shift your attention to something every 20 minutes but also take adequate breaks from an intense activity for several hours in a day. If you are working using a computer or driving for long periods of time, or general work that requires intense waves of focus, make sure to balance your time and allot time for those periods of intense activity diversify throughout your day, and actually take breaks by either taking a walk and looking at nature, or meditating, or just have fun not doing something by listening to music, doing light stretches.
Position your technological screens at a right distance
You have to ensure that you are looking at your technological devices at a correct distance with their correct position. The screen must be a few feet away from your eyes and you should view it to the level of your eyes, or slightly below them.
The right lighting
Dimming your lights will help reduce the risk of potential eye strain, as well as keeping glare at a minimum. To do this, you can opt for shading windows or using filters on your technological devices.
Use Eye Drops
Eye Drops can be relieving in terms of pain, itchiness, and when the eyes are becoming too dry. In addition to that, when you immerse yourself in an activity for an extended period of time, using eye drops will make you blink more, which is what you forget while focusing on the activity.
Improve the room’s air quality
A room’s great air quality will account for our eye health’s improvement and eye strain management and prevention. To do this, you can buy a humidifier, turn down the heating and cooling system if you have it, or simply find a spot that is not polluted, that has great air humidity.
Our health, amidst all the busyness, hustles, passions, and dreams of our lives should always be our top priority because if not? we will be paying a very high price for neglecting it. So, start taking accountability, and start with your eyes!