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Precautions for Digital Device Use

The use of technology has increased substantially over the years. As it has, the medical field has seen a number of new problems arise. In ophthalmology, we’ve seen an increase in vision and general eye health issues among all age groups. Adults struggle more with dry eye syndrome and symptoms like blurry vision related to computer use. Younger people are also complaining more of symptoms like stinging and burning or head and neck pain. According to some studies, there may be a connection between digital device use and vision problems in children. Seeing this, we find it necessary to discuss ways in which we may improve the way we use today’s technology.

How the Eyes Work

Vision requires an accumulation of visual information from both eyes. This information can be taken in from a range of distances but, according to research, the eyes are at their most natural position when looking about 20 feet in the distance. It isn’t that anything closer is bad, necessarily, but that it strains the muscles around the eyes to have to observe objects up close for a long period of time; and by a long period of time, we mean 20 minutes or more. How many hours a day do you spend looking at a screen?

Precautions for screen time are easy to implement and can quickly work to reduce digital eye strain. These include:

  • Keep screens at a distance when possible. Obviously, our screens can’t be several feet away from our eyes. Experts recommend a distance of about 2 feet. This enables adequate viewing without creating extraordinary strain.
  • Position screens below eye level. Looking up at a computer or other device forces the muscles around the eye to work in a way they were not meant to for very long. When using a computer or other device, the screen should be a few inches below the face.
  • Pay attention to glare. Screens are clearest when light sources are not reflecting off of them. Contrast may be adjusted with built-in settings, while glare-reducing films may be necessary for optimal viewing.

The use of digital devices can have an effect on your vision. Likewise, your vision can affect how your eyes observe digital devices. Get to know your eyes better by scheduling a comprehensive exam in our Winchester, VA office. Call 540.722.6200 for friendly scheduling assistance.

Posted in: Eye Conditions, Eye Health

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