The amount of time spent looking at screens on digital devices has risen dramatically due to this pandemic. We use digital screens for almost anything- whether it's work, school, or for entertainment. According to studies, the average American adult spends more than 3 hours on their smartphones alone. This pattern is also seen in children and adolescents. With the increasing amount of new technology and digital platforms being introduced every day, it is not a surprise that screen time is higher now more than ever in history.

More and more eye diseases have arisen in the past decade due to the introduction of digital devices. The fact that everyone's eyesight is deteriorating is an indication of how damaging too much screen time can be. Screen time not only negatively affects the eyes but also on an individual's overall health. To grasp the seriousness of the situation, consider the following three reasons why you should restrict your screen time:

1. Dry eye disease

Dry and itchy eyes are one of the most common side effects of spending more time in front of a screen. Healthy eyes should be lubricated and not have a sensation of stinging or burning. Our eyes naturally blink every 10 seconds to lubricate and clean your eyes by spreading your tears over its outer surface. Blinking also maintains a healthy balance of oil and mucus in the eyes to help keep them comfortable.

However, staring at a screen can cause eyes to dry up by reducing the number of times we blink. Irritation and blurred vision can be a result of this. It has also been observed that children are particularly vulnerable to this problem, therefore it is important for parents to set limits on their children's screen time. Dry eye disease can be avoided by keeping the screen at a distance, increasing the font size, and taking regular breaks. 

2. Eye fatigue  

Spending long periods in front of a screen puts pressure on the eyes. Since many of us now work from home as a result of the pandemic, our screen time has increased. Our eyes get tired as a result of the constant use of phones and computers. Overly watery or dry eyes, double vision, trouble focusing, headache, insomnia, hypersensitivity to bright light, and other symptoms may all result from strained eyes. These issues may have a negative impact on one's wellbeing.

Limit your screen time, take as many breaks as possible to prevent straining your eyes.

3. Myopia 

Myopia is an eye disorder in which distant objects become blurred. A myopic person can only see things that are close to them clearly. Kids who spend the majority of their time indoors watching television, using laptops, or using other portable devices are more likely to experience nearsightedness.

Although the exact connection between staying indoors and myopia is still unknown, some studies show that constant close viewing disrupts the eye's function and development. Looking at distant points trains the eye to concentrate light on the right portion of the retina. Natural light from the outdoors is also beneficial to the well-being of the eyes. 

Before you reach for your phone or laptop- think about the adverse effects it can have on your eyes. Limiting your screen time is a great way to start taking care of your vision and prevent your eyes from worsening or developing chronic eye diseases.


June 10, 2021 — SightSage Yu

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.