Looking at screens for long periods of time can put a heavy strain on our eyes. Whether it’s looking at our phones, reading emails on our computers, or watching a movie on TV, prolonged time spent looking at a screen can make your eyes feel achy and cause your vision to blur.
One reason for the strain is we blink less often while looking at screens. This can cause our eyes to dry out and begin to feel uncomfortable. It’s also hard for the eyes to continuously look at the bright light of a screen and focus on small objects like text.
Experts recommend following the 20-20-20 rule:
- At 20-minute intervals, take a quick break and look away from your screen.
- During this break, find an object at least 20 feet away and focus your sight on that.
- Maintain your sight on that object for at least 20 seconds before returning to the screen.
Blue light glasses are a recent innovation that are touted to help filter out blue light from screens. Studies show that blue light affects our circadian rhythms, which can disrupt sleeping patterns. Blue light glasses can improve sleep quality, but research shows that they don’t reduce eye strain because they don’t increase your rate of blinking. Some of the best ways to reduce eye strain is to make sure to give your eyes occasional rest, keep them lubricated with eye drops, and following the 20-20-20 rule.
Along with paying attention to your screen time and following the 20-20-20 rule, another important way is to go for regular checkups with your eye doctor. A vision plan from ASBA can help you keep your eyes at their best as well as save on checkups, exams and also quality eyewear.