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Digital breaks: Why and how should we take them

Living in the digital age means most of us stay glued to some type of electronic device for several hours each day. This also means most of us are in danger of developing digital-related eye strain, a condition that results from excessive periods of screen time without breaks. Symptoms include blurred vision, dry eyes, headaches, light sensitivity, and neck and shoulder pains.

Here are some ways you can reduce your risk of developing digital eye strain.

Take frequent breaks throughout the day. Whether you're working from home or on-site, set an alarm every 20 minutes as a reminder to step away from the screen.

Maintain proper distance from your computer. The screen should be about an arm's length, or roughly 25 inches, from your eyes. It should also be positioned in such a way that you gaze slightly down at it instead of straight ahead or up.

Wear proper glasses. Ask an eye doctor if you need to use special glasses to help you avoid digital eye strain. These glasses may be different from the ones you use for reading.

Blink more. In most cases, people blink less when reading from a digital screen. As blinking is the eye's way of getting the moisture it needs, make a conscious effort to blink as often as possible to keep its surface from drying out.

Set brightness and contrast. Adjust your screen's brightness to match the light around you and increase its contrast to reduce eye strain. You may also want to make images or texts larger to keep you from squinting while reading from the screen.

Many issues related to digital eye strain are difficult to detect without undergoing an exam performed by a qualified eye doctor. The exam would allow the doctor to identify the underlying reasons causing the eye strain and recommend the right treatment before they become worse.

To schedule an appointment for an eye exam, give us a call at (0966) 9501-464 or visit us at Level C, Williams Center, Williams St., corner Mayflower St., Greenfield District, Mandaluyong City.


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