Your phone screen and your eyes are not really friends, but what choice do you have?
Sometimes, you notice your vision is blurry and you wonder where it is coming from. You don’t need to think to much about what may be the reason.
Your fondness for your phone may be responsible.
Truly, there is always a circumstance that goes with the overuse of anything.
Your phone is not different and there are researches that have identified the risk with uncontrolled exposure to your phone’s screen.
Basically, it will be okay to let you know that Your phone screen and your eyes are not friends.
Prior to this time, early generation phones had less apps and functionalities. As a result, their usage was in moderation.
As modernisation comes, the time spent on the phone increases. Indirectly also, the risk of eye issues increases as well.
You must have heard about how computer screen affects the eyes.
The same condition and effect goes with the phone that you use. However, the problem arises as a result of overuse.
It is gradually becoming impossible for some persons to stay for one hour without looking at their phone. Especially persons who have no restrictions in their work place.
Fortunately, studies on phone screen and your eyes have important recommendations you should follow.
There is a way to use your device to ensure that these side effects on your eyes do not come.
Digital eye strain (DES), also known as computer vision syndrome, encompasses a range of ocular and visual symptoms, and estimates suggest its prevalence may be 50% or more among computer and phone users.
Symptoms fall into two main categories: those linked to accommodative or binocular vision stress, and external symptoms linked to dry eye. (1)
This same condition is prevalent among phone users who give no attention to the best way of using their phones.
Ever since apps on you phone increased, with social networks taking the lead in terms of attention, the amount of time you spend looking at your screen increased.
In the bus; on your way to work and back home, your phone is your companion.
At home; on your bed, before your sleep, your phone keeps you company.
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But as you engage in this addictive practice, your eyes experience strain even though it is not instant.
According to a 2017 study, psychological stress is very high during the usage of mobile phone in the late evening or midnight. (2)
This stress brings strain to the eye. One of the reasons is that electromagnetic wave emitted from mobile phone reduces the concentration of blood melatonin in humans.
Melatonin is a hormone made by the pineal gland (a tiny organ near the center of the brain). It helps control the body’s sleep cycle, and is an antioxidant.
There are different stages your eyes go through in your sleep cycle, as you lay on your bed.
But exposure to light from the screen alters this process. This is basically what the above indication means.
The researchers found that symptoms of eye strain were noted for mostly 25 out of the 30 persons involved in the research.
Fortunately, there are no long term concerns for eye strain, but it could be discomforting if you have it.
Intraocular Pressure (IOP)
While eye strain may not be too much of a concern, this should.
Intraocular Pressure or Ocular Hypertension is another issue with the phone screen and your eyes.
In 2018, researchers considered effect of smartphone screen on the eyes of people who use them.
After the study, result showed that in healthy young subjects, reading or writing on smartphone significantly increased Intraocular pressure. That is the pressure in the eyes that is often related to glaucoma.
Basically, the changes of IOP were faster and greater under the low-light condition. (3)
IOP is the fluid pressure inside the eye.
Eye care professionals measure it with a process referred to as tonometry.
It is an important aspect in the evaluation of patients at risk of glaucoma.
Unfortunately, a long term effect of this increased pressure is that it can cause glaucoma and permanent vision loss in some individuals.
Effect On Sleep
While you lay in bed at night, watching movie, reading or scrolling through social networks, your eyes get the rays from your screen.
It is past bed time, but you are still awake. Your sleep time is reducing by the day. The cycle is getting altered and your body is getting used to a late time sleeping period.
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Unfortunately, there is a negative effect this has on you. This effect is the highlight of a 2005 study.
Researchers say there is an evidence that mobile phone exposure prior to sleep may promote rapid eye movement sleep and modify the sleep electroencephalogram in the first non-rapid eye movement sleep period. (4)
Unfortunately, there are lots of problems that go with loss of sleep time or poor sleep time.
It could affect the function of the brain and other organs of the body.
Phone Screen And Your Eyes: Best Practices
That said, long term exposure, without following best practices will result in poor sleep or inadequate sleep.
There are recommendations on how you should use your phone to ensure that it does not affect your eyes.
The 20-20-20 Rule
Proponents of this principle recommend that you implement a setup to take regular interval about every 20 minutes. Look away from the phone every 20 minutes and fix at some object at least 20 feet far for at least 20 seconds. (5)
This will give rest for eyes, reduce fatigue and strain. This is known as the 20-20-20 rule.
This technique is very useful for young children who may be new to use of phone.
If your exposure to phone screen is high, it is recommended that you go for eye examination. This will help identify issues early and address it. Above all it will also keep the vision clear and healthy.
Also, routine eye examinations and appropriate vision habits can help to prevent or decrease the progress of the symptoms associated with cell phone vision.
If you found this helpful, kindly share with your friends and loved ones to help them know how best to use their phones.