With more of us spending longer on screens for work, entertainment and socialising it’s no surprise that growing numbers of people are experiencing eyestrain and headaches at the end of the day, known as computer vision syndrome (CVS) or simply digital eyestrain. Prolonged use on digital devices without regular breaks can cause a number of symptoms, including blurred vision, headaches, eyestrain, dry eye, irritated or red eyes, double vision, dizziness, neck pain and difficulty refocusing the eyes. The good news is that all these symptoms are often fully reversable and optometrists have all the suitable knowledge and expertise to manage them.
How can I manage digital eyestrain?
1. Have an Eye Test
Firstly, anyone with symptoms should have an eye test if they are due to rule out any eye disease. A full assessment of all aspects of vision can be made, including any glasses power you may need. You may already wear glasses, but regular glasses are not the same as computer glasses. Prescribed computer glasses are specifically made for use at the computer. You may need them even if your long distance vision is good. Computer glasses reduce eyestrain because the slight extra power means your eye muscle don’t have to work so hard.
2. Use Anti-Glare Coating
Always get an Anti-Reflection, also known as Anti-glare coating. This reduces the glare on your lenses from artificial lighting giving more comfortable vision. It also has other benefits including more comfortable night driving and giving appearance of clearer lenses allowing other to see your eyes more clearly through your glasses.
3. Use Blue Lens Filter
These filter out the High Energy Visible (HEV) light from digital screens that, in some people contribute to eyestrain. Many people have reported benefits of blue light glasses in reducing eyestrain, reducing headaches and improving sleep patterns.
4. Take a break
Another tip is to use the 20-20-20 rule. This means take a break from your screen every 20 minutes, looking at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.