ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nearly 70 percent of U.S. adults experience some form of digital eye strain while using digital devices. In a new report, Keeping Your Eyes Safe in a Digital Age, The Vision Council examines how the prolonged use of digital devices impact eye health.
Digital device use is on the rise, and the mounting reliance on technologies like tablets and smartphones is expected to grow. More than one-third of U.S. adults now spend four to six hours a day on electronic devices; fourteen percent report daily use at 10 to 12 hours. These digital behaviors have contributed to increased reports of digital eye strain.
Digital eye strain is defined by a variety of physical symptoms, including eye redness or irritation, dry eyes, blurred vision, eye fatigue, back, neck and shoulder pain, and headaches. It is often the result of spending too much time in front of electronics without allowing eyes to rest. The small screens of handheld electronics, in addition to blue light illumination and low-resolution content, can also irritate and fatigue eyes.
"Digital device use can exacerbate discomfort in people with existing problems like latent eye muscle imbalance, astigmatism, farsightedness and presbyopia," said Justin Bazan, OD, member of the Better Vision Institute. "The corrective eyewear prescribed for these issues is not intended for mid-distance range and can actually add to discomfort if used at a computer."
Eye care experts recommend purchasing a separate pair of eyeglasses for digital device use as a solution to eye strain. Computer eyewear is available in both prescription and non-prescription and designed specifically to relieve eye muscles and improve screen contrast while also reducing glare.
Despite the fact that more than two-thirds of Americans experience digital eye strain, many do nothing to lessen their discomfort. To prevent digital eye strain, The Vision Council recommends:
- Consulting an eye care provider about options for your eyes and lifestyle
- Taking a 20 second break every 20 minutes to look at something 20 feet away
- Purchasing computer eyewear or a separate pair of glasses for computer use
- Creating an ergonomically-friendly work station with proper lighting, seating, and monitor settings
- Enlarging computer text and browser settings
- Remembering to blink
To view or download a copy of Keeping Your Eyes Safe in a Digital Age, visit The Vision Council at www.thevisioncouncil.org.
SOURCE The Vision Council