Digital Eye Strain

In the digital age, our reliance on screens has skyrocketed, blurring the lines between work and leisure. However, this comes at a cost: digital eye strain, a prevalent issue affecting professionals across the country. In this blog we share some staggering statistics and effective strategies to combat this modern day strain. 


Understanding Digital Eye Strain: The UK Perspective 

According to a YouGov study, a staggering 59% of adults in the UK experience symptoms of digital eye strain, ranging from dry eyes to headaches, after prolonged screen exposure. Shockingly, this affliction isn’t confined to older demographics. A Vision Direct survey revealed that 73% of young adults aged 18-34 in the UK reported experiencing similar symptoms, highlighting the widespread impact across age groups. 


The Rise of Screen Time in the UK 

In the UK, adults spend an average of 8 hours a day glued to screens, as reported by Ofcom. The COVID-19 pandemic only exacerbated this trend, with internet usage surging by 40%, according to Statista. This increased reliance on digital devices for work, education, and entertainment has led to a surge in digital eye strain cases, affecting productivity and well-being. 


Impact on Work and Productivity 

Digital eye strain isn’t just a nuisance, it’s a productivity killer. A study by the College of Optometrists found that 65% of office workers in the UK reported decreased productivity due to symptoms of digital eye strain. The annual cost of treating digital eye strain in the UK exceeds £1.2 billion, including expenses for eye exams, glasses, and eye drops, according to Specsavers. 


Strategies to Combat Digital Eye Strain 

Follow the 20-20-20 Rule: Take regular breaks by following the 20-20-20 rule—every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break, and look at something 20 feet away. This simple practice helps reduce eye strain by giving your eyes a chance to relax and refocus. 


Adjust Screen Settings: Optimise your device settings to reduce eye strain. Decrease screen brightness, adjust text size and contrast, and use blue light filters to minimise the impact of harmful blue light emissions. 


Maintain Proper Ergonomics: Position your screen at eye level, about an arm’s length away, to promote good posture and reduce strain on your neck and back. Invest in an ergonomic chair and ensure your workspace is conducive to optimal eye health. 


Blink More Often: Remind yourself to blink frequently while using digital devices to lubricate your eyes and prevent dryness. Consider using artificial tears to alleviate discomfort and keep your eyes hydrated. 


Take Regular Breaks: Encourage yourself and your team to take regular breaks away from screens. Use this time to stretch, hydrate, or engage in activities that don’t involve digital devices, allowing your eyes and mind to rest and recharge. 


Digital eye strain is a pervasive issue affecting professionals and youngsters across the UK. By implementing effective strategies to combat digital eye strain, you can safeguard your eye health. If you are in any way concerned about this don’t hesitate to drop by for an examination or chat. Click HERE to get in touch!