Do you find yourself staring at the computer for hours on end?
Whether it be for business or leisure purposes, too many of us are using the computer for long periods of time without a proper break.
Not only can this be unhealthy for our body and mind, it is bad for our eyes.
What Causes Eye Strain?
Eye strain (also known as 'tired eyes') occurs when your eyes ache, feel weak or even heavy due to prolonged use. It's very common and doesn't need medical help but knowing ways to prevent it is good for your eyesight. Eye strain can also trigger migraines or headaches in some individuals.
Eye strain can come from any number of activities. Those include poor lighting conditions, driving, reading, or any other activity that require the eyes to maintain intense focus for a long time.
The common signs and symptoms of eye strain include dry eyes, back, neck and shoulder pains, general overall fatigue and feeling of heaviness in eyes.
5 Ways To Help You Prevent Eye Strain
Here are a five ways to help you prevent eye strain. If you find that you still experience eye strain, or have severe eye strain please see your local opticians or contact your GP. Sometimes, there is an underlying medical cause for eyestrain that will require medical treatment.
1. Have Adequate Lighting
Check your lighting; a high amount of contrast will put more strain on your eyes. This could be anything from reading, to watching TV, or working on the computer. Lower the contrast and brightness of TVs and computer screens and make sure you have the room lit evenly so your eyes don’t have to work as hard.
2. Take Regular Breaks
Give yourself regular short breaks from near work tasks.
Even if you feel that you don't need a break, you can be surprised how much good it can do you. Near work tasks include using the computer, embroidering, knitting, reading, etc.
3. Remember To Blink
Normally, the pupils constrict but this does not happen when you look at display screens such as the TV, mobile phone, or laptop screen; instead, it will stay dilated.
This means the light is not being filtered, causing our eyes to be exposed to excessive light. This can be extremely damaging to the eyes and can be avoided by remembering to blink (very simple!).
4. Visit The Opticians Annually
Ensure that your glasses or contact lens prescription is up-to-date. The prescription of the eye has natural changes over time, keep your eyes healthy by getting them check every year or at least every two years.
Always wear your glasses when you need to, if you don't like your glasses then talk to your opticians about considering contact lenses or other options.
5. Relax And De-Stress
Sometimes a good night's sleep can really help if you work on the computer or drive for long periods of time. Try to do something active and stay away from display screens on your days off work. Go out for a meal or organise an activity/day out with family or friends to keep yourself happy instead of staying in on the laptop.
Stress can also be a contributing factor to eye strain. Why not have a relaxing day out and take care of aching tensions in your back by booking a back massage?
Not only can back massages help release muscular tension, it also helps the body to relax and ensures a good night's sleep. Spas and beauty salons offer back massages as well as other treatments.
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