Eye doctor advises on screen time to prevent eye problems
BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) — Tuesday, March 1 marks the start of Save Your Vision Month. This year, the American Optometric Association is promoting awareness of digital eye strain and the importance of regular eye exams.
Working from home is becoming more common, and with that, device usage is on the rise. Bloomberg Eye Care’s Dr. Brad Bloomberg says staring at a screen for long periods of time can be unhealthy for your eyes.
“This excessive computer use leads to dry eye problems and blurry eye problems, as well as eye strain and headaches,” he said.
To try to avoid this, Dr. Bloomberg recommends the 20-20-20 rule.
“That is, for every 20 minutes you’re on the computer, you should look somewhere else, preferably out of a window or something in the distance, for 20 seconds and try to blink about 20 times for you’re doing this,” he said. .
Dr. Bloomberg says it helps keep your eyes refreshed and well lubricated. He says eye exams are helpful in determining whether you need special glasses for computer use or some type of blue light protection.
Eye exams go beyond just checking your vision, so it’s important to make sure your vision is sharp and clear, but also that you’re healthy and normal.
Dr. Nicholas Lawrence of Eye Care Associates says he tells everyone that “vision is better than 20/20” because there are things that can happen behind the scenes that can cause vision problems.
“Things like glaucoma, diabetes in the eyes, won’t necessarily start to cause you to lose your sight, but sometimes those are things that doctors… there’s been a handful of times I’ve been diagnosed with diabetes before that they’ve never seen a primary care center doc just from some of the findings that I have,” Dr. Lawrence said.
This is why it is important to have eye exams every year.
“The eye is very visual, so if something is going on, often we see it. So we kind of need to see you to see things,” Dr Lawrence said.
Even brain tumors or cancer can be detected by an eye exam.
Most optometrists recommend a yearly comprehensive eye exam, even if you have 20/20 vision.