Dry eye symptoms can be made more apparent by the use of digital screens. 90% of the population view screens daily and spend more than eight hours in front of one of these devices.
It is normal to blink every 5 seconds, however, when you look at a screen you blink five times less. As a consequence, the tear evaporates faster, resulting in dry eyes.
Globally, the number of people suffering from dry eye is around 344 million. However, more than half of those who suffer from it have not been diagnosed.
Do you know the causes and symptoms of dry eye?
Dry eye is a disease in which the surface of the eye is not properly protected by tear. The dry eye is produced by insufficient tear production, poor quality or the combination of both.
The tear is made up of three layers and its quality depends on its composition. However, the eyelid is essential to spread the tear and remove impurities.
Causes of dry eye
Among the causes that can cause dry eye symptoms are the following:
- Use of digital screens.
- Some medications.
- Use of contact lenses.
- Use of eye drops with preservatives.
- Hormonal changes such as those that occur in pregnancy or menopause.
- Environmental factors: pollution, heating or wind.
- Unbalanced diet or lack of vitamins.
If you wear contact lenses, you should know that they hydrate from your tear and decrease eye sensitivity affecting the tear production reflex. In addition, preservatives of products for contact lenses and artificial tears aggravate dry eyes.
Dry eye symptoms
The use of digital screens can produce:
- Eye fatigue
- Screen light sensitivity
- Blurry vision
If you wear contact lenses, eye irritation, itching, and stinging sensation decreased vision, red-eye, and even pain may occur. Notwithstanding this, other symptoms of dry eye, such as gritty sensation and heaviness of eyelids, also sometimes occur.
How can you avoid dry eye symptoms by using screens?
Some of the tips to avoid or stop the onset of dry eye symptoms by the use of digital screens are:
- Maintain optimal workplace lighting: a good way to do this is to adjust the quality and brightness of the screen you are using.
- Use good quality screens or filters that avoid glare.
- Try to reduce the exposure time to the screens by taking breaks periodically.
- Force the blinking regularly.
- Perform eye exercises: look near-far, left-right or circles.
- Take a proper posture in front of the screen and maintain the right viewing angle. Pause every 20 minutes to rest your eyes.
- Use artificial tears that provide relief and good hydration.
In the case that you wear contact lenses, you must maintain good eye hygiene and take care of their cleaning and maintenance. Maintaining good hygiene when handling contact lenses helps prevent conjunctivitis and other infections.
Try to wash your hands before and after handling them. Nor should you abuse the use of time or sleep with them on. In addition, it is advisable to clean the eyelids regularly with wipes without preservatives or phosphates.
Use artificial tears of low viscosity without preservatives, which are suitable for use with contact lenses. When you are in adverse weather conditions use sunglasses to protect your eyes.
It is advisable to avoid environments with smoke, dust or chemical products, as well as the use of products intended to whiten the eyes. To combat environmental dryness you can benefit from the use of humidifiers.
Dry eye is a chronic disease that can be controlled. One of the solutions for its handling is the use of wetting drops. Another recommendation that may be useful is that your pharmacist or doctor advise you on medications that can cause dry eyes as an adverse effect.