As working from home is becoming a norm due to this pandemic, many working adults find themselves sitting in front of their monitors long after work hours, from morning to dark. Losing track of time, many of them complain about headaches coming from strained eyes.
Medically Reviewed by Dr. K on 2nd Dec 2021.
Eye Fatigue: 3 Things to Know And Safety Measures to Take
Your eyes are red, irritated, and weary. It’s a common condition that’s seldom fatal. Simple measures may be taken to avoid or alleviate this issue.
If none of these methods work, consult your doctor. What you’re experiencing may be a symptom of a more severe problem that needs treatment. This is particularly essential if you suffer from headaches or other issues such as:
- Eye discomfort
- Double vision
- A significant shift in vision
What Causes It?
Anything that needs a lot of eye movement may make you tired. The following are a few of the most common:
- The act of reading (especially on a screened device)
It may also fatigue your eyes if you stare at a bright light or spend time alone in a dark environment.
If you stare at a computer, smartphone, or gaming console for extended periods, your eyes may get tired. This may be referred to as computer vision syndrome or digital eye strain by your eye doctor. It has an impact on the majority of individuals who use one. According to some estimates, computer-related eye problems may account for up to 10 million annual eye doctor visits. As more people use smartphones and other portable digital gadgets, which require your eyes to work more than average to concentrate on small text, the issue is likely to worsen.
Because you blink less often while staring at a computer screen, digital gadgets may be related to eye tiredness. The average person blinks 18 times each minute. The eyes are naturally refreshed as a result of this. However, studies show that individuals blink approximately half as frequently while staring at a computer or other digital device. This may leave your eyes feeling dry, tired, itchy, and burning.
What Are the Symptoms?
Keep an eye out for:
- Eyes that are red, watery, or irritating
- Having difficulty concentrating
- Eyes that be dry or watery
- Double eyesight or hazy vision
- Light sensitivity has increased.
- Neck, shoulder, or back pain are all common complaints.
These signs may make you less productive. If you labour for extended periods, you risk exacerbating the issue. Sleep replenishes the nutrients in your eyes. A lack of sleep may cause eye discomfort.
How Can You Prevent Eye Fatigue?
Make a few basic adjustments to:
Your computer screen:
- It should be 20-26 inches away from your eyes and just below eye level.
- Clean the surface of dust and fingerprints regularly. Smudges may decrease contrast and cause glare and reflections, among other issues.
- Select displays that can be tilted and swivelled.
- Make your screen glare-free by using a glare filter.
Your working environment includes:
- To get rid of glare and sharp reflections, change the lighting.
- Make use of a chair that can be adjusted.
- Next to your computer screen, place a document holder.
Your work habits:
- The 20-20-20 rule is an excellent place to start. Look at anything 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
- As a reminder, post a note on your computer that reads “Blink."
- Take pauses from your computer work regularly.
Your eye-care routine:
- To relieve weary, dry eyes, use a warm towel (keep your eyes closed).
- When your eyes feel dry, use artificial tears to refresh them.
- Use an air cleaner to filter dust and a humidifier to provide moisture to the air to help avoid dry eyes when inside.
If you’re experiencing eye tiredness or discomfort, see an eye doctor to rule out a more serious medical issue.
Make an appointment for a complete eye exam if the issue persists. Your symptoms may be related to a condition such as an eye muscle imbalance or dry eye, which the doctor can rule out. They can also determine whether your prescription for glasses or contact lenses is up to date and suitable for computer usage.
- Prevent Blindness America web site: “Computers and Your Eyes."
- National Eye Institute: “Eye Health Tips."
- Get Eye Smart website: “Computer Use and Eyestrain."
- U.S. Department of Labor: “Computer workstations: Monitors."
- National Eye Institute: “Facts About Dry Eye."
- American Optometric Association: “Computer Vision Syndrome.”