Hope you’re all doing well!
According to the research I have come across, the average person spends anywhere from six to nine hours a day behind a screen.
If we count both work and leisure many of us spend almost all of our waking hours behind some sort of screen.
All of this screen time can lead to eye strain and some symptoms of digital eye strain include:
- red, dry, or irritated eyes
- eye fatigue
- blurred vision
- tension headaches
- pain in the neck and shoulders
I have to admit that I am personally very concerned about the effects of technology on our overall mental and physical health but especially on our vision because our eyes are key in helping us see and process the information on our screens.
Before writing this post I did a little bit of research on the effects of technology and screen time on our eyes and the general consensus seemed to be that aside from the negative effects of blue light, screens are not that damaging to our eyes because they do not emmitt the most dangerous forms of radiation such as x-ray radiation.
I am definitely taking this conclusion with a grain of salt because this type of technology is still so new. Throughout the course of human history humans have survived and thrived without these screens and just in the past ten years or so these devices have proliferated and they have become a constant fixture of our lives. Ultimately, I believe time will tell the true effects of technology on our overall health and well-being and especially on our eyes.
However, I am definitely a firm believer in prevention being better than the cure so here just a few preventive tips that can help protect your eyes from damage:
- When you look at any screen for an extended period of time your eyes will become tired. Most experts recommend the 20-20-20 rule where you look away from the screen every 20 minutes at something around 20 feet away for about 20 seconds.
- Keep your phone as far away from your eyes as possible but still at a distance where you can comfortably read without straining.
- Often when we are really focusing on the screen in front of us we forget to blink and this can lead to dry and irritated eyes. In order to avoid this try to remind yourself to blink at frequent intervals. If you keep forgetting to blink, try placing a sticky note to remind yourself.
- When you are sitting behind a computer screen, sit about an arms length away from the screen.
- Always adjust the brightness of the screen to make it ideal for your current settings. Avoid screens that are too bright because your eyes have to work extra hard to focus on a screen that is too bright.
- By now most of us have heard about the damaging effects of blue light. In an ideal world its just best to completely avoid screens before bed. However, if you’re like me and you still use your screen before bed consider turning on nightshift on your iPhone. This feature reduces the amount of blue light in favor of warmer tones. I think that many Android phones also have a similar feature called Night Mode.
- When you are working in the evenings try to position yourself so that the light source, such as your light bulb or lamp, is behind you rather than behind the screen because this will put less pressure on your eyes.
- Always try to take frequent breaks to rest your eyes. Go outside, stretch, grab a bite to eat, whatever works for you!
I really hope that you found these tips to be helpful. I do want to add that recently, about a month ago, I started taking an eye supplement with 20 mg of Lutein and 4 mg of Zeaxanthin.
Its far too early for me to recommend this product but it claims to support vision and macular health.
I am just taking this supplement as a preventative measure to help protect my eyes. I have noticed that nowadays I rarely get any tension headaches whereas I used to get them quite often before taking this supplement.
I was first introduced to this supplement by my aunt who claims that her vision has drastically improved after consistently taking this suopplement for one year.
Honestly, my vision is not the best so I would definitely be very pleased if it does improve my eyesight. I guess only time will tell.