We live in a world of screens. In fact, you’re reading this on a screen right now. Our passion for staring at backlit glass all day can actually negatively affect your life and not just by sending your uncle on a clichéd rant about social media – especially when he throws in those improper conjugations of “tweeting” that stopped being clever or believable five years ago.
If you aren’t careful, excessive screen time can impact your eye health in an especially aggravating way: eyestrain. Don’t ditch your smartphone just yet; we’re not suggesting something insane like never finding out how Game of Thrones ends. Instead, I suggest that you consider the following, so that you can avoid eyestrain and get back to finding out “Which Friends Character Would Be Your BFF If Your Twenties Were a .GIF of Jennifer Lawrence”.
Commonly, eyestrain will cause you to experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- Pain in the eyes, neck, or back
- Dry eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Blurred vision
- Double vision
Eyestrain will not normally lead to permanent damage and it can mostly be remedied by adjusting your screen time and being attentive of your environmental conditions. If small text is placing unnecessary strain on your eyes, enlarge it until you can read comfortably. Printing longer documents off can also relieve your eyes from the stress of focusing on a screen. Opening your eyes too widely for a prolonged period of time can lead to dryness and irritation, so make sure that your screen is placed below eye level. Relax and don’t be afraid to take breaks, just looking somewhere else for 20 seconds every 20 minutes can work wonders for your eye health.
Be sure to adjust the lighting of both your screen and your workspace. The brightness and contrast of your screen has a large influence on your susceptibility to eyestrain, so find a balance with which you feel most comfortable. The lighting in your room should also not be too dark or too light. Darkness can cause your monitor to be more agitating for your eyes since it appears brighter. If your room is too light, you run the risk of creating a glare, which puts stress on your eyes.
By keeping these tips in mind, you can greatly reduce the possibility of eyestrain. How do you deal with staring at a screen all day?