Vision Therapy in Pittsburgh

The Connection Between Screen Time and Dry Eye

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Alleviating Digital Eye Strain for Comfortable Vision

Do your eyes feel dry, irritated, or fatigued after a lengthy day spent scrolling through social media, tackling a barrage of emails, or streaming your favorite content? If so, you might be wondering whether screen time could be the culprit behind these discomforts.

Indeed, while digital devices have brought convenience, they've also introduced a new challenge for eye health: digital eye strain, which is often accompanied by dry eye symptoms.

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Understanding Digital Eye Strain and Its Link to Dry Eyes

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Digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, is a condition that arises when you spend extended periods gazing at screens. Its symptoms include dry eyes, fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches.

Several factors contribute to dry eyes during prolonged screen use:

  • Reduced Blink Rate

    While focusing on screens, people tend to blink less frequently. This reduced blink rate can lead to reduced tear production and increased tear evaporation, resulting in dry eyes.

  • Blue Light Exposure

    Digital screens emit blue light, disrupting the circadian rhythm. Disrupted sleep, in turn, can contribute to dry eye symptoms.

  • Poor Posture

    Incorrect screen placement or poor posture can cause you to open your eyes wider, increasing exposure to air and tear evaporation.

  • Reduced Blink Quality

    Frequent screen time can lead to incomplete blinks, where the upper and lower eyelids do not meet fully, causing inadequate tear film spreading and reduced oil secretion from meibomian glands.


The Effects of Excessive Screen Time on Children's Eyes

Digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, is a condition that arises when you spend extended periods gazing at screens. Its symptoms include dry eyes, fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches.

Several factors contribute to dry eyes during prolonged screen use:

  • Eye Fatigue and Discomfort

    Excessive screen time can lead to eye fatigue, causing discomfort, reduced vision clarity, and headaches. Children may also lose interest in activities like reading due to eye strain .

  • Dry and Irritated Eyes

    Long screen sessions can result in dry and irritated eyes, as prolonged screen focus reduces blinking frequency. Maintaining a stable tear film on the eye's surface is crucial for clear vision, especially for children adapting to screens designed for adults.

  • Reduced Focus Flexibility

    Children who spend extended periods focusing on screens may struggle to adjust to distance vision afterward. Although this is usually a short-term issue, it highlights the importance of balanced screen time and outdoor activities.

  • Risk of Developing Myopia

    Excessive indoor screen time deprives children of essential natural daylight exposure, impacting their eye development. Studies suggest a link between increased indoor time and a higher risk of nearsightedness (myopia) in children. Balancing screen use with outdoor play is crucial for healthy eyes.

woman viewing tablet in bed


Treating Dry Eyes Caused by Screen Time

Dry eyes induced by excessive screen use may range from mild to severe, with severe cases potentially leading to permanent eye surface damage. Therefore, it's essential to take steps to alleviate these symptoms.

If you're someone who spends a considerable amount of time in front of screens, you can adopt several strategies to reduce the risk of digital eye strain and dry eyes:

  • Follow the 20-20-20 Rule: Every 20 minutes of screen time, take a 20-second break to focus on something at least 20 feet away.
  • Adjust Screen Settings: Modify the font size, brightness, and blue light emission to create a more comfortable viewing experience.
  • Proper Lighting: Ensure your screen is not overly bright, and your surroundings are well-lit.
  • Blink More: Always remember to blink regularly to keep your eyes moist.
  • Stay Hydrated: Maintaining adequate hydration can help support tear production.

Use Artificial Tears: Lubricating eye drops can relieve dry eyes while using screens.

Patient Reviews
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227 Reviews
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- Apr. 09, 2024
Great staff fabulous/ A + product !
- Mar. 12, 2024
The young guy that helped me was awesome!
- Mar. 07, 2024
Sophia is absolutely awesome.
- Feb. 10, 2024
First time coming here. The first time was good, friendly, professional. Help me pick out my frame... s.second time I went to pick up glasses, they were an little stand off. I got an stuck up vibe from them. But other then that it was good.
- Jan. 24, 2024
Extremely welcoming staff. Dr Wooste has excellent bedside manner! 10’s across the board!
- Dec. 19, 2023
The staff at Wilkins is exceptional and spot on with suggestions. They are extremely helpful and c... ourteous, and they make you feel like family. We have been going here for years and have never had a bad experience!
- Nov. 27, 2023
My daughter and I had a great experience at Eyetique! The staff was friendly and efficient. Thank yo... u!
- Nov. 22, 2023
They remodeled since I was in last. Very nice, not cosy but crisp, professional with a stylish flare... . I f my insurance did not cover a healthy chunk for glasses would not be able to afford this place. Good docs and staff, I tell everyone I know who's looking for an eye doc or just glasses, to check this place. Pick your style, they probably have or can get. I'm getting a different color frame than was available in the style I wanted, but the color was available from the manufacturer. So I'm getting the color and shape I want. Simple but it makes me happy. And who doesn't like new glasses for the holidays?
- Oct. 27, 2023
I just went here today and every staff member was great. Never seen people work so well together to... deliver a patient needs. I never had a bad eye doctor visit but this was by far the best one. Thanks again.
- Oct. 19, 2023
My family has been going to this location for over 15 years. Everyone is very personable and patient... . Denise is wonderful and will only recommend frames that fit your face and not based off of the price. I highly recommend!
- Oct. 13, 2023
Polite and professional.
- Jun. 21, 2023
Very experienced, friendly and knowledgeable staff.
- Mar. 13, 2023
The Doctor and Staff are incredibly kind and patient. They took every care to make sure my prescript... ion was right and the frames I picked looked great.
- Dec. 18, 2022
Great customer service from the person who helped me select frames.
- Dec. 11, 2022
The staff is always upbeat, friendly, and they make selecting glasses so easy!
- Dec. 05, 2022
I love my glasses and great service
- Aug. 29, 2022
Dr. Woeste and James are exceptional and the new inventory is amazing! I’ve been to many eye offic... es over the past 25 years, and this is the best in my experience! 🙂
- Aug. 24, 2022
Denise was friendly, professional and very helpful. The new lenses were made quickly and just what I... need. I highly recommend Eyetique.
- Aug. 22, 2022
Yeah, they are probably more expensive but if you want the cool factor, go to Eyetique.
- Aug. 06, 2022
Very good customer service.

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Consult Eyetique - Wilkins for Digital Eye Strain Relief

Although lifestyle changes can be helpful, more effective dry eye management strategies may be necessary in some cases. Eyetique - Wilkins provides a range of treatments to restore your family's eyesight.

If you or a loved one suffers from ongoing dry eye symptoms due to prolonged screen use, our experienced eye care professionals can provide relief. Make an appointment with Eyetique - Wilkins to discuss dry eye management options. Let's work together to protect their eyesight and ensure a bright future.

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