By Apollo 24/7, Published on - 17 September 2021
Technology has become an integral part of our lives and many of us spend several hours looking at the screen, be it computers, televisions, or smartphones. Screen time is a significant health concern as it leads to eye strain and vision problems which are termed as ‘computer vision syndrome’. This can cause signs and symptoms like watery eyes, headaches, blurred vision, and dry eyes, accompanied by neck and shoulder pain. As the early signs of computer vision syndrome are often overlooked, awareness of the condition is essential towards prevention and management.
A computer vision syndrome, also known as digital eye strain, describes the eye and vision-related problems that occur from the prolonged usage of a computer, mobile phone or other digital devices. Interestingly, it is not just adults who are facing this concern; even children who use tablets and gaming devices display the symptoms of computer vision syndrome.
The use of digital devices such as phones and laptops has increased across all age groups during the pandemic. Digital devices are being used extensively for entertainment, work, or to stay connected with relatives and friends. Also, virtual learning during the COVID-19 pandemic is driving an increase in eye strain among children.
Computer vision causes several symptoms that include:
The characteristics of a digital screen and its visual demands are unique when compared to reading printed text. This makes several people vulnerable to developing vision-related symptoms when using digital devices. One may experience the symptoms of computer vision syndrome due to several factors that include:
A combination of these factors may cause eye strain. It is also seen that people using a computer blink less which can cause dry eyes which may contribute to computer vision syndrome.
A comprehensive eye examination can help diagnose computer vision syndrome. The testing may emphasize visual requirements to see how the eye works at the working distance of a computer. The diagnosis may include:
Treatment of computer vision syndrome - Treatment involves regular eye care and making changes towards the usage of digital devices. Eye drops may be prescribed in the case of dry eyes. However, treatment mainly focuses on managing the condition with a few lifestyle changes.
A few tips to prevent and manage eye strain and discomfort associated with computer vision syndrome include:
Computers and smartphone usage for prolonged time is unavoidable for most of us. Hence, it is crucial to understand that prevention is the main strategy in the management of computer vision syndrome. Making small changes to the working environment and proper eye care can go a long way in reducing eye strain. Since children may have different needs in using a computer or other digital devices comfortably, a few simple precautions and practices can help them cultivate proper viewing habits.
For any vision-related queries, you can speak to an eye specialist.
You can also explore a range of eye care products to keep your eyes healthy and free from infections.
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