Bluewater Optometry

Digital Eye Strain in Sarnia

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A Symptom of a Digital Lifestyle

Smartphones, tablets, laptops, and computers have become essential components of an average Canadian’s life. Although digital devices have made our lives objectively easier, it’s crucial to understand the effects they can have on our eyes.

With many Canadians spending nearly 11 hours a day on a digital device, uncomfortable symptoms related to digital eye strain are becoming more and more common.

Signs of eye strain are also similar to those of other eye conditions. If you ever experience symptoms listed here, you should book an appointment for an eye exam to rule out more serious conditions.

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Causes Digital Eye Strain

Eye strain occurs when our eyes are forced to work harder than they need to. Strain can happen any time we focus on one thing for long periods, like when driving, working on a computer, or reading without taking a break. Eye strain can also occur when we squint to see in low light, are exposed to glare or dry moving air from a fan, heating, or air-conditioning system, or when we’re stressed or tired.

Digital devices are the most common cause of eye strain because the digital screen makes our eyes work harder. An uncorrected vision problem, like nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, can also intensify symptoms.

Symptoms of Digital Eye Strain

Symptoms of eye strain may include:

  • Headaches
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Sore or irritated eyes
  • Burning or itching eyes
  • Excessive tearing or dry eyes
  • Excessive blinking
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sore neck, shoulders, or back
  • Difficulty concentrating

Managing Digital Eye Strain

Improving digital eye strain symptoms can be achieved through simple changes to your device, workplace, or daily habits:

  • Allow your eyes to rest and readjust by giving them frequent breaks while you work. Many optometrists suggest following the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, look at something at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  • Adopt proper workstation ergonomics to reduce stress on your body. Improper posture and workstation setup can cause back, neck, and shoulder aches and increase your chance of developing eye strain.
  • Set your screen colour, brightness, and contrast to suit your eyes and the lighting in your environment.
  • Reduce glare on your screen by dimming the lights in the room. Position your screen away from bright lights or windows, or use an anti-glare screen cover or computer glasses.
  • Keep your screen clean and free from dust and fingerprints that affect visibility.

Find Solutions to Digital Eye Strain at Bluewater Optometry

Fortunately, eye strain does not usually lead to long-term consequences and will go away if you adjust your daily habits.

Eye strain symptoms are often similar to those of other underlying health conditions or vision problems, so always have your symptoms analyzed by our optometric team. We would love to investigate your symptoms and provide you with a customized treatment plan and get you back to work!

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Come See Us Today

We’re on the corner of Exmouth Street and Napier Street, right across from Norm Perry Park.

Our Address

251 Exmouth Street
Sarnia, ON N7T 5M7

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Clinic Hours

9 AM4:30 PM
9 AM5 PM
9 AM4 PM
9 AM5 PM
9 AM4:30 PM

We are closed for all statutory holidays, and long weekends.

Hours are subject to change without notice.

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