One question that an optometrist is regulary asked is whether technology overuse can cause damage to the eyes. Here, Specsavers in Andover's store director, Paul Dhanji discusses eye strain caused by computer use.
What are the symptons
'When you are starting at a phone, a tablet or computer for a long time, it can cause a strain on your eyes. This may lead on to other symptons such as eye discomfort, headaches or sore, tired, burning or itchy eyes. Your eyes might also get a bit watery, dry or blurred, or even cause some double vision.'
What can you do to help
Paul says: 'Of course, an eye examination is paramount if you want to ensure you vision is good. But there are other things you can do. Take breaks - take a minute to stare out of the window. Looking far away relaxes the focusing muscle inside the eye, which in turn reduces eye fatigue.
'Short, frequent breaks are more satisfactory than occasional, longer breaks. Make sure you have good lighting, as eye strain is often caused by excessive sunlight coming in through the window or by bright room lighting. Use curtains or blinds to reduce the brightness of the sun, reduce the lighting in your room and avoid sitting under big overhead fluorescent lights.
Set up your work station correctly
Paul continues: 'Do make sure you have an anti-glare screen attached to your monitor as this can help and if you wear glasses, you find that having lenses with an anti-reflective coating reduces glare. Here at our store in Specsavers in Andover, we offer lenses with Ultraclear Superclean - an anti-reflection and a scratch resistant coating in one.
Paul adds that improper posture while working on your computer also adds to the problem, so ensure your workstation and chair are at the correct height. Your computer screen should be 20 to 24 inches from your eyes and the centre of the screen should be 10 to 15 degrees below your eye line.
For more information on computer-related eye strain, pop in to see the team at Specsavers in Andover.