Australians love digital media and we devote half of our waking hours interacting with digital media channels across multiple devices. It has changed the way we work, learn, shop, socialise and relax. So how is this affecting our eyes?
What is Digital Eye Strain?
Digital eye strain is the physical eye discomfort felt by many individuals after two or more hours using a digital screen. Symptoms can include
- Eye strain / fatigue
- Dry, itchy, burning or red eyes
- Blurred vision
- Neck / shoulder / back pain
There are studies showing that as many as 65% of people using digital devices experience digital eye strain symptoms.
Why does Digital Eye Strain happen?
- Our eyes are focusing more intensively and repeatedly to switch between devices and to focus on small, close devices such as smart phones and iPods.
- Digital devices are backlit and emit blue-violet light. This can cause discomfort, strain and is even linked to disrupted sleep patterns.
- The normal blinking rate is often reduced from 17 or more blinks a minute to 12-15 blinks. This can make your eyes feel dry and uncomfortable.
- Our posture changes as we lean toward our screens and/or slouch in our chairs, putting strain on the neck and back.
Innovative Digital Eyewear
New, innovative lens technologies can now reduce digital eye strain by eliminating glare, filtering out blue light and preventing vision fatigue.
We refer to these as 'desk lenses'. They are designed to relax and protect your eyes by providing clear viewing at typical screen viewing distances, as well as reducing blur, pixelation, brightness and glare.
Even if you already wear prescription glasses, a dedicated computer pair can often make the difference to achieve comfortable use of your computer and devices.
Your Digital Vision Needs
Understanding your computer set up and use of digital devices at home helps us to prescribe a tailored digital vision solution for you. Please talk with us about your symptoms as we all adjust to the new digital age.
Tips to Reduce Digital Eye Strain
- Remember to blink often
- Take breaks from staring at your digital screen
- Use the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes in front of a digital device, take a 20 second break and look at objects 20 feet (7 metres) away
- Adjust the display settings of your devices
- Wear glasses designed for digital device use