Our Eyes are the organ of sight. They enable us to see the world every day. They help us in experiencing the vivid colors of life and to watch every single detail. Taking our eyes for granted, can lead to problems with our eyes, or even worse, with our eyesight.
This lockdown, due to COVID-19, has led to an increase in average screen time for all. Getting hooked to electronic devices for long un-interrupted hours, is causing Digital Eye Strain (DES), also known as Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS).
CVS is a temporary eye condition caused as a result of focusing on a digital screen for longer duration, without breaks. It affects about 60 million individuals globally.
Less Blinking: When an individual is working on any electronic device, he/she tends to blink less, this causes Dry eyes. Ideally, normal blinking is 16-20 times per minute. When it is as low as 6-8 times per minute, it gradually results in dry eyes.
Improper Workstation: If the sitting arrangement is not proper, then it may lead to CVS. So, one should always adjust the monitor, desk, chair and lighting in room, so that the eyes don’t feel strained.
Dry environment & dehydration: Use of Air-conditioners at workplace also make the environment dry. This dryness or dehydration makes people prone to CVS.
Blue light: The blue light emitting from the screens can affect natural sleep and wake-up cycles, thus causing increased strain. So, it’s advisable to take a break from the screen at least 2 hours before going to sleep.
How to Deal:
Blink Often: Be mindful of blinking & keeping eyes lubricated.
20-20-20 Rule: While working on any digital device, take break after every 20 minutes, look at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds. This will break the continuity of strain.
Avoid glare: Keep a distance of a foot away from the monitor or the digital screen when sitting straight. Add an anti-glare screen to your device to avoid eye strain, use proper lighting in the room.
Exercise: Exercise even when sitting, stretch your neck and shoulders frequently. Move your arms and legs during break.
More Tips to avoid CVS in Children:
Increase water intake: Drinking water keeps body hydrated and regulates body temperature. It hydrates eyes, flushes out excess salts and reduces eye strain.
Customized furniture for kids: Parents should ensure to have customized furniture setting, that suits the child’s sitting posture and also refrain from neck and body ache.
Restrict screen time: Set fixed time for the screen activities.
Avoid Rubbing of eyes: It’s an indicator of dry eyes or some eye infection. Consult an ophthalmologist, if your child doesn’t stop rubbing the eyes.
Healthy Diet: Green leafy vegetables keep your body and eyes healthy. Nutrients in veggies like Lutein & Zeaxanthin, carry anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that keep the eyes healthy.