With an increase in digital technology, many individuals suffer from physical discomfort after screen use for longer than two hours at a time. Computer Vision Syndrome, also referred to as Digital Eye Strain, describes a group of eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged computer, tablet, e-reader and cell phone or TV use. Many individuals experience eye discomfort and vision problems when viewing digital screens for extended periods. The level of discomfort appears to increase with the amount of digital screen use.

About 80 percent of American adults report using digital devices for more than two hours per day with nearly 67 percent using two or more devices simultaneously, and 59 percent report experiencing symptoms of digital eye strain.

The computer-using population in India is more than 40 million, and 80% of them have discomfort due to CVS. The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health survey has reported that visual symptoms occur in 75-90% as opposed to 22% musculoskeletal disorders of video display terminals workers.

WHAT IS THE IMPACT ON ADULTS?

Additionally, close to 80 percent report using digital devices, including TV, in the hour before going to sleep, with almost 55 percent in the first hour they are awake.

WHAT IS THE IMPACT ON CHILDREN?

While more than 70 percent of American adults report their child(ren) receives more than two hours of screen time per day, nearly 25 percent are still not concerned about the impact of digital devices on their child(ren)'s developing eyes.

Meanwhile, besides playing outside, the most popular activities children engage in are playing on a digital device (23.1 percent) and watching TV (20.1 percent). And American adults report their children experience the following after being exposed to two or more hours of screen time:



Are you facing any of these?

Most common symptoms include eye and vision problems, such as:

vision

Am I at risk for Dry Eye or CVS?


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What causes Computer Vision Syndrome?

Our eye muscles never evolved to stare at screens or digital devices for long periods of time.

Two of the main culprits behind Computer Vision Syndrome and Digital Eye Strain are blue Light and glare.

  • Blue Light : is the high energy light that digital devices and LED lights emit. Blue Light sits at the end of the visible light spectrum, right next to UV light. Its short wavelength, which is inversely correlated to energy level (meaning the shorter the wavelength and lower the frequency, the higher the energy), enables that high energy to stress the ciliary muscle in the eye.
  • Glare : the second culprit of Computer Vision Syndrome and Digital Eye Strain, is the unwanted reflection from the screen that enters the eye. This, in turn, stresses the ciliary muscle in the eye and causes issues like dry, strained eyes and headaches.


Ask our experts more about blue coated glasses.


  • Poor focusing: our eyes are naturally at rest with a view distance of 20 feet away, so looking at something like a phone, tablet, or computer, which is generally 18-24 inches away from us, further stresses our eyes. Specifically, the ciliary muscle in our eye spasms back and forth to adjust to this close proximity viewing. This blurs vision, causes headaches, and leads to eye fatigue and strain.
  • Poor Blinking: The bright light from our screens—and air-conditioned or well-ventilated environments with constant flowing air—discourages blinking. Blinking prevents our eyes from drying out, so less blinking equates to more dry and itchy eyes.
  • Poor posture and positioning: We often hunch over our digital devices or position them in awkward places, which can lead to neck, shoulder, and back pain.


How Is It Treated?

Solutions to digital screen-related vision problems are varied. However, they can usually be alleviated by obtaining regular eye care and making changes in how you view the screen.

EyeCare

In some cases, individuals who do not require the use of eyeglasses for other daily activities may benefit from glasses prescribed specifically for computer use. In addition, persons already wearing glasses may find their current prescription does not provide optimal vision for viewing a computer.

Eyeglasses or contact lense prescribed for general use may not be adequate for computer work. Lenses prescribed to meet the unique visual demands of computer viewing may be needed. Special lens designs, lens powers or lens tints or coatings may help to maximize visual abilities and comfort. Ask to our experts for blue coated glasses

Vision Therapy Some computer users experience problems with eye focusing or eye coordination that can't be adequately corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Ask Our experts about a vision therapy programme for you.


DIGITAL EYE STRAIN- 7 TIPS TO RELIEF

Some important factors in preventing or reducing the symptoms of CVS have to do with the computer and how it is used. This includes lighting conditions, chair comfort, location of reference materials, position of the monitor, and the use of rest breaks.

  • Location of computer screen Optimally, the computer screen should be 15 to 20 degrees below eye level (about 4 or 5 inches) as measured from the center of the screen and 20 to 28 inches from the eyes.
  • Reference materials - These materials should be located above the keyboard and below the monitor. If this is not possible, a document holder can be used beside the monitor. The goal is to position the documents so you do not need to move your head to look from the document to the screen.
  • Lighting - Position the computer screen to avoid glare, particularly from overhead lighting or windows. Use blinds or drapes on windows and replace the light bulbs in desk lamps with bulbs of lower wattage.
  • Anti-glare screens - If there is no way to minimize glare from light sources, consider using a screen glare filter. These filters decrease the amount of light reflected from the screen.
  • Seating position - Chairs should be comfortably padded and conform to the body. Chair height should be adjusted so your feet rest flat on the floor. If your chair has arms, they should be adjusted to provide arm support while you are typing. Your wrists shouldn't rest on the keyboard when typing.
  • Rest breaks - To prevent eye strain, try to rest your eyes when using the computer for long periods. Rest your eyes for 15 minutes after two hours of continuous computer use. Also, for every 20 minutes of computer viewing, look into the distance for 20 seconds to allow your eyes a chance to refocus. (20-20-20 rules)
  • Blinking - To minimize your chances of developing dry eye when using a computer, make an effort to blink frequently. Blinking keeps the front surface of your eye moist and healthy.
  • Regular eye examinations and proper viewing habits can help to prevent or reduce the development of the symptoms associated with Computer Vision Syndrome.


Can You Get Dry Eyes From Using A Computer Or Smart phones?

  • Yes, computers, television and other digital devices can cause dry eyes — because using these devices affects how we blink.
  • Blinking is important because with every blink, your eyelids spread a fresh layer of tears across the surface of your eyes to keep them moist, comfortable and healthy.
  • Specifically, computer use affects both blink rate (how frequently we blink) and blink completeness (whether the eyelids closed completely during a blink).
  • We normally blink about 10 to 15 times per minute. But studies show when people are working at a computer they tend to blink less than half that often. Also, computer use tends to cause more incomplete blinks, so the tear film is not spread across the entire cornea.
  • This decrease in blink rate and increase in the percentage of incomplete blinks increases the risk of dry eye symptoms during computer use.


What is dry eye?

Dry eyes is a common condition that occurs when your tears aren't able to provide adequate lubrication for your eyes.

Symptoms

Signs and symptoms, which usually affect both eyes, may include:

A stinging, burning or scratchy sensation in your eyes Stringy mucus in or around your eyes Sensitivity to light
Eye redness A sensation of having something in your eyes Difficulty wearing contact lenses
Difficulty with night time driving Watery eyes, which is the body's response to the irritation of dry eyes Blurred vision or eye fatigue

Causes

Dry eyes are caused by a lack of adequate tears. Your tears are a complex mixture of water, fatty oils and mucus. This mixture helps make the surface of your eyes smooth and clear, and it helps protect your eyes from infection.

For some people, the cause of dry eyes is decreased tear production. For others it's increased tear evaporation and an imbalance in the makeup of your tears.


Decreased tear production

  • Aging
  • Certain medical conditions, including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma, Sjogren's syndrome, thyroid disorders and vitamin A deficiency
  • Certain medications, including antihistamines, decongestants, hormone replacement therapy, antidepressants, and drugs for high blood pressure, acne, birth control and Parkinson's disease
  • Laser eye surgery, though symptoms of dry eyes related to this procedure are usually temporary
  • Tear gland damage from inflammation or radiation


Increased tear evaporation

  • Wind, smoke or dry air
  • Blinking less often, which tends to occur when you're concentrating, for example, while reading, driving or working at a computer
  • Eyelid problems, such as out-turning of the lids (ectropion) and in-turning of the lids (entropion)


The most common symptoms of CME include:


Aging Process

Hormonal changes or Menopause

Poor Diet

Wearing contact lenses



What’s the treatment for dry eye?

Treatment for dry eyes usually depends on what’s causing your symptoms. There are a few different types of treatment that can ease your symptoms and help keep your eyes healthy.


Over-the-counter eye drops

Your Eye doctor will prescribe you an artificial eye drop, Gel Or Ointment to keep your eyes moist.

Prescription medicines

If your dry eye is more serious, your eye doctor may give you a prescription for medicines called cyclosporine (Restasis) or lifitegrast (Xiidra). These medicines are both types of eye drops that can help your eyes make more tears.

Prescription medicines

If your dry eye is more serious, your eye doctor may give you a prescription for medicines called cyclosporine (Restasis) or lifitegrast (Xiidra). These medicines are both types of eye drops that can help your eyes make more tears.

  • Lifestyle changes. If something in your life or your environment is causing your dry eye, or making it worse, your doctor may suggest changes to help protect your eyes.



For example, if a medicine you take for another health condition is causing dry eye, your doctor may also suggest that you try a different medicine.


Your eyes may also feel better if you:

Try to avoid smoke, wind, and air conditioning

Use a humidifier to keep the air in your home from getting too dry

Limit screen time and take breaks from staring at screens

Wear wraparound sunglasses when you're outside

Drink plenty of water — try for 8 to 10 glasses every day

Get enough sleep — about 7 to 8 hours a night



  • Tear duct plugs. If tears are draining too quickly from your eyes, your doctor may suggest putting special plugs (called punctal plugs) in your tear ducts (small holes in the inner corners of your eyes). These plugs can help keep your tears in your eyes.


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