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Sacramento Eye Clinic – How to manage digital eye strain?

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Schauffele & Fleischmann, ODs Tips on how to manage digital eye strain in Sacramento, California.

If you’re like most people, you’re probably inseparable from your electronic devices – phone, laptop, tablet, etc…, but wish you could part with the headaches and eye strain it’s causing.

On the average, American spend between 2 and 11 hours each day absorbing and processing digital media. This extended screen time can lead to a range of uncomfortable, or even painful visual symptoms. Most commonly, people complain to eye care professionals about dry eyes, blurry vision, headaches, eye twitching, red eyes, neck and shoulder pain. According to statistics reported by The Vision Council, 59% of people who use digital tech regularly experience these symptoms.

Topics: Digital eye strain, Digital eye strain glasses, Digital eye strain symptoms, How long does digital eye strain last

Getting to the root of the problem

What’s really causing digital eye strain? Several reasons are to blame. According to the American Physical Therapy Association, a main problem is the posture we use when starting at a digital screen. When using a mobile device, you probably view downwards, straining your neck. In fact, a 30-degree tilt of the head is said to create a 40 lb. strain on your neck!

At our eye clinic, we also treat many patients who have dry eyes from viewing screens all the time. That’s because people tend to blink less frequently when gazing at a digital device. Blinking is a vital reflex that keeps your eye surface lubricated with fresh, healthy tears. Every time you close and open your eyes, it clears environmental allergens and impurities from your eyes. When using a computer, studies show that you blink a third less times per minute. Consequently, your tear film is decreased – leading to burning, gritty feeling in your eyes, and blurred vision. Over time, reduced blinking may also damage the tear-producing glands in your eyes.

Many eye diseases can be quickly and easily diagnosed during a Comprehensive eye exam, Pediatric eye exam and Contact lens eye exam. If you were diagnosed with an eye disease, such as Cataracts, Glaucoma, Macular degeneration, Diabetic retinopathy, or Dry eye, you may be overwhelmed by the diagnosis and confused about what happens next. Will you need medications or surgery – now or in the future? Is LASIK eye and vision surgery an option for you ? Our Sacramento eye doctor is always ready to answer your questions about eye disease and Contact lenses.

Why is blue light bad?

Blue light is a hot topic nowadays, and many of our eye care patients want to know the bottom line about this high-energy short wavelength.

First of all, the sun emits about 100 times more blue light than your phone. However, the sun is millions of miles away from your eyes, while your phone is only inches only. The blue light from your phone can therefore have a powerful effect. One critical way in which blue light affects your health is by disturbing your sleep cycle. When your eyes react to blue light (interpreted as sunny daylight), they send signals to your brain that it’s time to be awake. So using your smartphone in bed can seriously disrupt your body’s daily/nightly rhythm. Overexposure to blue light has also been associated with speeding up the aging process of your eye.

Tips to reduce eye strain

  • Before you do anything else, call an eye clinic near you to schedule an eye exam! Comprehensive eye exams are the best way to pinpoint any risk factors for digital eye strain, such as dry eye or an incorrect vision prescription for your glasses or contact lenses.
  • Adjust your work area. Make sure you are physically comfortable, sitting with good posture – not tilting your head or hunching over to look down at a laptop or tablet for long periods of time. The opposite can also be a problem – make sure your screen isn’t too high. The top of your screen should be at eye level with your head, allowing your eyes to look downward slightly towards the middle of the screen.
  • Check your lighting. Brighter light can help prevent or reduce eye strain. Light fixtures should also be angled in a way that doesn’t cast glare on your screen or shine into your eyes. Ambient lighting that matches the brightness of your screen causes the least amount of stress on your eyes.
  • Take a break every 20 minutes to look about 20 feet into the distance for 20 seconds – and blink as you do this! You’ll reset your eyes’ focus and disperse tears across the surface of your eyes. Getting up and taking a short walk can also be beneficial for preventing headaches.
  • Declare the two hours before bedtime as a no-screen zone. Listen to music, read a book, take a bath, or engage in any bedtime routine that doesn’t depend on a screen.

Still suffering from digital eyestrain?

Visit an eye care center for an eye exam and a consultation about more ways we can help to relieve your painful vision, such as computer glasses, blue-light blocking filters, and no-glare coatings on lenses.

Schauffele & Fleischmann, ODs, your Sacramento eye doctor for eye exams and eye care

Alternatively, book an appointment online here CLICK FOR AN APPOINTMENT

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As of Tuesday evening, March 17, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended all routine eye care be deferred until further notice in order to slow the transmission of COVID-19 throughout our community.

We will remain available to triage eye emergencies as well as help you with routine matters during this challenging time.

During this period of social distancing and quarantine, we must all do our part by restricting activities outside the home except for getting medical care.

⦁ Routine Eye Exams: If you are scheduled for a routine eye examination appointment for the remainder of March and early April, we will reschedule your appointment. As of March 18, 2020, we will begin rescheduling routine eye examination appointments for April 8, 2020 and beyond.
⦁ I need to replace my glasses. What do I do? Please contact us at phone number: 916-971-3937, text number: 916-919-8877, or info@seeustosee.com. We may be able to extend your prescription during this time and will help you with your eyewear needs.
⦁ I’m nearly out of contact lenses. What do I do? Please contact us at phone number: 916-971-3937, text number: 916-919-8877, or info@seeustosee.com. We may be able to extend your prescription during this time, and/or place an order for your contact lenses and have them shipped to your house.
⦁ I need a refill on the medication prescribed to me by the practice. What do I do? Please contact us at phone number: 916-971-3937, text number: 916-919-8877, or info@seeustosee.com. We can transmit a refill for your prescription directly to your pharmacy so that you have the medication that you need.
⦁ What about an eye emergency? What can I do? If you have an ocular emergency, we are, as always, available to help you at any time. Call 916-919-8877 and wait for instructions at the end of the message.

Drs. Schauffele & Fleischmann will do their best to accommodate emergencies in the office whenever possible.

We have asked the majority of our staff to stay home until further notice to protect them, our patients, our community, our nation, and our planet. Despite the financial and emotional hardships this will cause, we ask every one of you to do the same.

Together we will weather this storm.