Take Care: Technology Affects Your Eyes

September 08, 2015
Jess

Technology is such a big part of our everyday lives, that often we don’t give the hours we spend on the computer, on our phones, watching tv a second thought. If you think a hundred years ago, we didn’t have screens, and now we use them for everything from earning a living, entertainment, right through to as a tool for our studies. We’re addicted to screens, and their impact is real. More than 30% of people spend the majority of their waking hours looking at a screen. Tally up your day, how many hours do you spend at the computer? How about watching TV? Or looking at your phone? You might be surprised. There’s a big correlation between technology and vision read on for more:

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What does this all mean for your health?

Well, aside from the obvious decrease in activity, which is contributing to our expanding waist lines, this screen time can affect our eyes. In the US, over 61% of the people tested experience eye strain, which is most likely related to their considerable screen use.

There has been a considerable increase in the number of people with advancing myopia since the launch of smart phones. Tension headaches are also a common side affect of too much screen time, as well as dry eyes and eye strain. The blue-violet light used in digital screens has been shown to perhaps influence the onset on AMD – which is age-related macular degeneration. It’s scary to think something that we depend on so much and use every day can negatively impact our health and our eye sight so much.

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What Can You do to Protect Your Eyes?

For many of us, it’s hard to limit our screen time. For example, I need to use a laptop to work, and I work an average of 7-10 hours a day, so for the majority of that time each day I’m using my screen. For me, as it’s my livelihood, it’s basically unavoidable. But after reading these facts I’m interested to try to limit my after hours screen time. Instead of unwinding with the TV in the evening, why not try reading a good old fashioned book? You can also take technology free weekends – electing to have a day or the entire weekend free from phones, TV and so forth.

The most important thing is to strike a balance that works for your lifestyle and minimises the health impacts from screen use. Your eyes are important and you need to take care of them. Small changes can make a big difference in your eye health.

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