28 Aug What Too Much Screen Time Does to Your Eyes
Technology is everywhere today, from tablets to smartphones, TV screens, laptops, and video games—it can be nearly impossible to escape screen time. In fact, most of us spend hours per day on screens—whether it is sitting in front of a computer for work or being glued to our phones after a day at the office.
There has been a lot of studies on screen time and its impact on children, but what many adults don’t realize is that too much screen time can have just as negative of an impact on adults as well—particularly on our eyes. It is so important to understand what too much screen time can do for your eyes, so you can take the necessary steps to prevent too much screen time from impacting your eye health.
Hours of screen time after a long day at the office can lead to eye strain. This includes eye irritation, dryness, fatigue or blurred vision. The longer you spend staring at the screen, the more this eye strain can start to bother you.
Digital screens such as tablets, phones, and computers that we spend so much time on are backlit and emit what is known as blue light. Blue light gives off high-energy visible light wavelengths. This blue light can cause irritation and even long-term irritation to the retina.
As we tend to fixate on what we’re viewing on the screen, we tend to blink about half the amount of time that we normally do. By not blinking, tears evaporate quickly, which results in dry spots, blurred vision, redness, and pain.
This is why it is so important to take breaks from the computer screen in front of you—just as you would take breaks from holding weights at the gym. One of the best things that you can do is to get up regularly and take a break so that your eyes can rest and recover. There are other things you can do to help protect your eyes as well.
The 20-20-20 rule is a popular approach to reducing eye damage from too much screen time. So, every 20 minutes you are looking at a screen or computer, you should look at an object that is 20 feet away or further for 20 seconds or longer. This will allow your eye muscles to relax.
Another thing you should consider is blue light glasses. These special glasses can filter the blue light from the screen and help keep eyes protected.
If you have questions about screen time and the impact that it can have on your eyes, you can call us here at Continuum Internal Medicine and schedule an appointment with one of our doctors. Give us a call at 817-617-8650 to schedule your appointment today.