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Relieves eyes from long periods of screen time

Many people spend many hours a day in front of screens, both professionally and privately – seven hours and more is not uncommon. Our eyes in particular pay the price. A renowned ophthalmologist gives six tips to counter the discomfort caused by long periods of time spent in front of a screen.

doctor Rishi P. Singh is an ophthalmologist at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio (USA). In a recent article, the expert explains what can be done in case of complaints caused by increased screen time.

Complaints of long screen time

According to retina specialist Singh, around nine out of ten people who regularly spend long periods of time in front of screens experience associated complaints, such as

reduce eye strain

Of course, the easiest and most obvious option is to stare less at screens. In many jobs, however, this is only possible to a very limited extent, especially from a professional point of view. Eye Doctor Singh shares six tips for those affected to help reduce eye strain, even during long periods of screen time.

1. Adjust the viewing angle of the screen.

According to Dr. Singh sometimes depends on the angle at which the screen is viewed.

“You’ll feel a lot more comfortable if your eyes are slightly lowered when looking at your screen,” says the ophthalmologist. It is best if the center of the screen, tablet or phone is 20 to 28 centimeters from the eyes and four to five centimeters below eye level.

2. Prevent glare and low contrast

Letters on a screen are often not as clear as on a printed page. Glare on the screen and insufficient contrast between the letters and the background can mean that the eyes have to work harder and tire more quickly. This manifests itself, for example, in an increased sensitivity to light.

“Arrange your screen so that it is not dazzled by ceiling lights or windows,” recommends the ophthalmologist. When sunlight passes through a monitor window, the blinds should be lowered. Desk lamps should also be low wattage.

3. Apply the 20-20-20 rule

What the expert calls the 20-20-20 rule can help reduce eye strain from screens. Every 20 minutes of screen time, aim for a point about 20 feet (six meters) away and stare at that point for 20 seconds.

“It gives your eyes a chance to refocus,” says Dr. Singh. Additionally, a 15-minute screen break should be taken after two hours of uninterrupted screen use.

4. Blink often

On average, a human blinks about 18 times per minute. However, when people stare at screens, this activity is reduced by up to 75%, increasing the risk of dry eye.

“To reduce this risk, consider blinking more often and refreshing your eyes regularly with moisturizing eye drops,” advises Dr. Singh. Humidity of around 40% in rooms also helps prevent dry eyes.

5. Eliminate underlying eye disease

According to the ophthalmologist, uncorrected vision problems contribute to the fact that the eyes tire more quickly. Possible eye diseases that tire you faster are, for example

Hyperopia, astigmatism, concentration or coordination problems, changes in the eyes caused by aging.

“An eye exam can help prevent neck, shoulder, or back pain that occurs when you twist your body to see the screen clearly,” says Dr. Singh. An eye doctor can determine if glasses are needed for computer work.

6. Avoid screens before bed

As mentioned above, it is not always possible to take your eyes off the screen. But especially before going to bed, you should no longer stare at a screen, as this can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep.

“Start by putting your cell phone away for 30 minutes before going to bed,” advises the ophthalmologist. This time should be slowly extended to an hour. “When it comes to eye health, social media and email can wait,” Dr. Singh concludes. (vb)

Author and source information

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This text corresponds to the specifications of the specialized medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been verified by health professionals.

Author:

Graduate editor (FH) Volker Blasek

Important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot substitute a visit to the doctor.

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