What is Digital Eye Strain?

Digital eye strain

What you need to know about technology and your eyes

What Is Digital Eye Strain?

Digital Eye Strain is physical eye discomfort felt by many individuals after two or more hours in front of a digital screen.

We devote half of our waking hours to interacting with digital media channels across multiple devices. Digital media has undoubtedly changed the way we work, learn, shop, socialise and relax.

Our eyes however are not accustomed to this digital environment, with 65% of users likely to experience one or more symptoms of digital eye strain.

What Are The Symptoms Of Digital Eye Strain?

Symptoms can include one or more of the following and severity varies depending on the individual and time spent on digital media:

  • Eye strain/fatigue
  • Dry, itchy, burning or red eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Headache
  • Neck/shoulder/back pain

Recent studies show that as many as 65% of digital device users experience digital eye strain symptoms, with approximately 75% of people who use two or more devices simultaneously affected.

Why Do Screens Cause Eye Strain?

Eyes are focusing more intensively and repeatedly to adjust the frequent switching between devices, as well as to increasingly smaller, pixelated characters and bright, glowing screens.
Digital devices are backlit and emit blue-violet light that can cause strain and discomfort and is linked to disrupted sleeping patterns.
A new reading zone in ultra near vision has evolved with the smartphone, placing even greater demands on our eyes.
The normal blinking rate is often reduced from 17 or more blinks a minute to 12 to 15 blinks, reducing tear production, and making your eyes feel dry and uncomfortable.

Can Digital Eye Strain Be Prevented?

In response to our changing visual environment, innovative lens technology alleviates digital eye strain by eliminating glare, filtering out blue light and preventing vision fatigue.

The good news is that digital lens innovation caters to both prescription and non-prescription wearers affected by digital eye strain.

Referred to as your computer, digital or work pair, these lenses are designed to relax and protect your eyes by providing clear viewing at a typical screen viewing distance, as well as reducing blurriness, pixelation, brightness and glare.

If you wear prescription glasses currently, a dedicated computer pair will not only combat eye strain but likely deliver postural benefits as your focus will be optimised for close up and screen viewing distances.

Your Digital Vision Needs

Understanding the demands of digital device usage on your eyes is just one of the aspects we will discuss with you as part of our 360° comprehensive eye consultation. Knowing how much time you spend in front of digital screens, the setup of your digital environment and the type of work you do, allows us to prescribe a tailored digital vision solution for you.

Further Tips to Reduce Digital Eye Strain

  • Remember to blink regularly
    Take breaks from staring at your digital screen
  • Use the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes in front of a digital device, take a 20-second break and look at objects 20 feet (7 metres) away
  • Adjust the display settings of your devices
  • Wear glasses designed for digital device use

If you would like more information on how to prevent digital eye strain, or on blue light glasses, drop in or make an appointment