Many of us make the mistake of spending hours in front of our digital screens without taking regular breaks. If you indulge in the same practice, you may have noticed the eye pain or headaches that you get after after a long day of computer work.
If you wonder why you get vision discomforts from your digital devices and if you need to buy glasses to combat the digital eye strain, let this article be your guide. Moreover, you will also get to learn some useful tips to protect your eyes from screen time.
Digital screens and your vision
If your work involves excessive use of digital devices, you will have to face temporary symptoms that are extremely unpleasant. Eye issues from computer use are normal and generally include:
- Blurry vision
- Dry eyes
- Double vision
- Itchy eyes
- Red eyes
These symptoms are highly unpleasant and steal away your efficiency. They are also known as ‘Computer Vision Syndrome’. Reading something on a screen is different from reading a newspaper. The small prints in the newspaper or magazines have good contrast that makes reading easy. However, the letters on a screen have unfocused lights. Our eyes have to change their focus multiple times to see the characters and we get eye pain and fatigue in the process.
Why does this happen?
Our digital screens give out high-energy blue light wavelengths that cause damage to your retinal cells when they come in contact with this light.
Since blue light rays are short and unfocused, they are scattered all over your screens quite unevenly. To make up for this, our eyes go the extra mile and work even harder. This is why they wear out when you’ve been on your computer for too long.
Not only this, when our eyes are focused on a screen, we blink less which means that more blue light gets passed through our cornea making our eyes dry.
Studies have also shown that indulging in close up tasks for a long time can make you nearsighted. It is a type of refractive error that could only be corrected with prescription glasses.
Is blue light bad for our health?
There is a possible ‘yes’ and ‘no’ to this question. When we talk about natural blue light that is present in the sunlight, it is useful for our body as it causes alertness in our body and boosts our mood patterns. This is why we don’t feel sleepy during the day.
But, when our eyes get exposed to the artificial blue light, it is only bad for our optic and physical health. As we have mentioned that blue light damages our retinal cells, it also affects our central vision and boosts our chances of developing age-related macular degeneration. Moreover, blue light exposure before bedtime disrupts our sleep/wake cycle making us feel more alert instead of sleepy during the night.
To protect vision loss from blue light damage, make sure you always have good-quality blue light glasses for computer use. They will block this bad light from reaching your eyes so you don’t feel eye fatigue and pain.
People over 40 who perform close up tasks can lose their distant vision too over time. In this situation, your regular reading glasses won’t help. You will need varifocal glasses to give you clear vision at both near and far distances. To make your varifocals fit for computer use, add a blue light coating over their lenses.
What can you do?
If your eyes are showing symptoms of computer vision syndrome or digital eye strain, it’s time you make some changes in your lifestyle and screen habits.
- Take regular breaks from your digital screen and make sure you change focus during the break.
- Do eye exercises to improve the flexibility of your eye muscles and make them strong.
- Make some healthy changes in your diet and eat more green leafy vegetables and fishes. Giving a healthy dose of nutrients and vitamins to your eyes will keep them functioning for a long time.
- Make sure you are not sitting too close to the screen as the blue light rays are more intense at close distances.
- Adjust the brightness level of your screen according to the ambient lights.
- To reduce the glare that is reflected from your screen, the source of room lighting should either be over your head or on the side.
If you’ve been coping up with digital eye strain for a while, visit an eye doctor and get your eyes checked. It is better to detect the problem and treat it while there is still time.