Today we live in the Information Age, a time that represents a shift from traditional industry to an economy based upon information technology. Every where you turn, society is being fed information from one of the many technological devices that are at our disposal. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the world has relied on technology more than ever. A study in The Wall Street Journal states that people are now spending 9.5 hours a day looking at a digital device. Some may be surprised to know that vision takes effort; it requires the use of tiny eye muscles. Stated by Scott P. Drexler, O.D., "When you overuse them, [the eyes] get fatigued and tired." And according to the American Optometric Association, it takes only two consecutive hours of scrolling through Facebook and/or doing homework on the computer to put you at risk for eyestrain, dryness, blurred vision, and headaches.
Below are a few solutions to try to help relieve stress on the eyes.
Change the way that you engage with the device. Jamie Mitchell, M.D. suggests that phones should always be a foot away from your face. Place your screens 3 to 4 inches below sight line, as it is easier on the eyes to be looking downward. Make necessary adjustments to your environment, such as reducing harsh lighting by replacing standard lightbulbs with LED lights. These do not give off a glare or emit high-energy blue-light wavelengths. According to Dr. Drexler, blue light contributes to focusing problems and hinders production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates your body's sleep-wake cycle. Sleep is the best medicine for your eyes.
Available now are anti-glare filters that buffer against blue light and stop ambient light from reflecting off the computer. There are also blue-light-blocking eyeglasses that reduce 42 percent of harmful wavelengths. And ladies, there is even a Tom Ford pair. iPhone has a night-shift feature that allows users to schedule a time, and the blue light on their screen will turn into warm light instead.
Along with the tips and the tricks to reduce your device's strain on your eyes, doctors recommend the 20/20/20 rule: Every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to look 20 feet away. For more information, click here.