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Digital Eye Strain During Quarantine

Rising Risks of Digital Eye Strain During Quarantine

Fortunately, we can quickly and easily diagnose most eye problems during a Comprehensive eye exam, Pediatric eye exam and Contact lens eye exam. At times, we need to do additional specialized testing.

In our office we make a special effort to help you understand your condition. We want to make sure that you don’t worry or become overwhelmed or confused about what needs to be done next.

If you have a refractive conditions such as Myopia (near sighted), Hyperopia (far sighted), astigmatism, or presbyopia (40-itis) we can help with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or orthokeratology.

If you have an eye disease such are Cataracts, Glaucoma, Macular degeneration, Diabetic retinopathy, or Dry eye, we will help you understand your problem. We will explain if you need medications or surgery – now or in the future?

In our examination, our doctors will explain your options and discuss things such as is LASIK an option for you or is your child becoming more nearsighted, and what can we do to prevent that?

Dr. Roth and Dr. Tiomno are always happy to answer your questions about eye disease and Contact lenses.


Our Eye Doctors Shares Tips to Prevent Vision Problems due to extensive Computer use.

Now, during COVID, you and your kids are probably staying home and practicing social distancing in order to reduce spreading COVID-19. That is certainly the responsible and safe thing to do, but the current stay-at-home lifestyle has also led people to spend more time on digital devices, whether its distant learning or working from home. Screen time is important for both work and leisure, but it has also led to a higher rate of digital eyestrain and other vision complications. Many of our patients have problems due to digital eye strain. Here are some suggestion to alleviate annoying symptoms, and to prevent computer vision problems:

  • Pay attention to posture

When you sat down at your office desk, you probably had ergonomic furniture. It was set to a good working height. At home, however, things may be different. It is a good idea to set your computer screen to about arm’s length and slightly beneath your line of vision. This will reduce eye strain. A good back support will reduce discomfort from sitting for long periods. To reduce glare and eye fatigue that comes from that, point your screen away from any bright lights and away from a window that might cause glare.

  • Take coffee breaks

Even if you’re not in the mood for another cup of joe, it’s a good idea to take regular breaks. For every 20 minutes on the computer, look at something that is at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Stand up and stretch your body and eyes! Get up and walk around your house a bit. Remember, sitting is the new “smoking”. Looking away from your screen will give your body and eye muscles a well-needed break.

  • Watch for warning signs

Patients often complain about the following computer vision symptoms when they visit our eye clinic:

  1. Headaches: When the pain is concentrated at the front of your head, it is usually vision related. When it’s at the back of your head, it’s usually posture related. If your temples are throbbing, it’s probably tension.
  2. Neck and shoulder pain: This is a direct result of a poorly positioned workspace. Your chair, screen, desk and keyboard all need to be aligned correctly for healthy posture.
  3. Blurry vision: If blinking clears up your sight, it could indicate you may have a dry eye problem. If your blurred vision usually occurs at the end of the day, it could point to mild farsightedness that’s being exacerbated by so many hours of close work. It could also be that your contact lenses are drying out.
  4. Dry eyes: When we look at a screen for long periods, we usually blink less, and that leads to more evaporation from your eyes. That changes the tear film. The eyes then tend to burning or itch. Those are symptoms of dry eye syndrome.

Computers can compromise children’s eye health

During quarantine, kids depend heavily on digital devices for entertainment and socializing. There are no afternoon clubs or groups to attend, minimal opportunities to socialize, and education itself has become remote in most places. Computers are filling a range of roles in kids’ lives.

Digital tech has allowed children to learn, or at least connect to school. Research shows that kids who don’t spend time outdoors are at an increased risk for myopia (nearsightedness) and progressive myopia, especially if it runs in the family.

During the pandemic, many parents have been bringing their kids in for eye exams. Many people now realize how much time kids spend on computer and the visual strain that it causes. It has made it even more apparent how much we use our visuals system in order to learn.

The most typical signs of a problem include:

  • Squinting at the TV or moving closer and closer to the screen
  • Headaches, particularly at the end of the day
  • Difficulty reading
  • Problems sleeping at night

Tips from our Doctors

  • Practice the 20-20-20 rule for ocular health: every 20 minutes, look 20 feet into the distance for 20 seconds. This will help your eyes feel comfortable for longer.
  • Keep appropriate distance from screens:
    • Mobile phones should not be close than one foot from the face.
    • Desktops should be about two feet away.
    • Laptops should be about 16-18 inches away.
    • TV screens should be about 10 feet away
  • Encourage kids to engage in physical activity outdoors, taking permitted walks or even kicking a ball around the backyard
  • Drink enough and stay hydrated
  • Make a point to remember to blink regularly
  • Don’t use digital devices within 2 hours of bedtime, so the blue light doesn’t disrupt your circadian rhythms

If you suffering from digital eye strain, our eye doctors, Dr. Roth and Dr. Tiomno can help. Schedule an appointment so we can help you prevent and solve the symptoms of computer vision.

Family Eye Care, your Old Bridge eye doctor for eye exams and eye care