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Eye Strain

Jan 15,2024

Eye strain, also known as eye fatigue or asthenopia, is a common condition that occurs when your eyes become fatigued or overworked due to extended periods of visual activity. It is often associated with activities that require intense or prolonged use of the eyes, such as reading, writing, using digital devices, or engaging in detailed work.

eye strain while working

What causes eye strain?

  • Prolonged screen time: Frequent and extended use of digital devices, such as computers, smartphones, and tablets, can strain the eyes due to the continuous focus and exposure to blue light emitted by these devices. So this is also called digital eye strain.

  • Poor lighting conditions: Insufficient or excessive lighting, glare, or improper contrast can strain the eyes and make it more challenging to focus.

  • Incorrect viewing distance: Sitting too close or too far from the screen or holding reading materials too closely can put additional strain on the eyes.

  • Uncorrected vision problems: If you have an uncorrected vision condition, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, it can contribute to eye strain when engaging in visual tasks.

Eye strain symptoms

Eye strain can manifest in various symptoms such as:

  1. Eye Discomfort: You may experience general discomfort or a feeling of soreness around the eyes.

  2. Eye Fatigue: Your eyes may feel tired, heavy, or strained, especially after prolonged visual tasks.

  3. Dryness or Irritation: Your eyes may become dry, itchy, or red. You may also experience a gritty sensation, as if there is a foreign object in your eye.

  4. Blurred or Double Vision: Prolonged eye strain can cause temporary blurry or double vision. This typically improves after resting your eyes.

  5. Headaches: Eye strain can contribute to headaches, especially tension headaches that are felt around the forehead, temples, or the back of the head.

  6. Light Sensitivity: Your eyes may become more sensitive to bright lights or glare, making it uncomfortable to be in brightly lit environments or under harsh lighting.

  7. Difficulty Concentrating: Eye strain can affect your ability to concentrate or maintain focus on a task. You may find it challenging to read, work on a computer, or engage in other visually demanding activities.

  8. Neck and Shoulder Pain: Prolonged eye strain can cause muscle tension in the neck and shoulders, leading to discomfort or pain in those areas.

how to relieve eye strain

How to relieve eye strain?

To prevent or relieve eye strain, these practices are recommended:

Take regular breaks:

Follow the 20-20-20 rule, where every 20 minutes, look away from the screen and focus on an object at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

Adjust your workspace:

Ensuring proper lighting while reading or using digital devices is essential. Avoid glare by positioning screens away from direct light sources. Adjusting the brightness and contrast on your digital devices can also help reduce strain. 

Blink frequently:

Blinking helps to keep your eyes moist and reduces dryness.

Use artificial tears:

If your eyes feel dry, using lubricating eye drops can provide relief.

Practice good ergonomics:

Maintain proper posture and positioning of your body and monitor to reduce strain on your neck, back, and eyes.

Blue light glasses:

There are various types of blue light filters available to help reduce the amount of potentially harmful blue light emitted by digital devices. Like blue light glasses, which can be worn while using digital devices to reduce the amount of blue light reaching your eyes.

Blue light filtering screen protectors:

They can also be helpful as same as blue light glasses because they typically use a layer or coating that selectively blocks or absorbs harmful blue light while allowing other wavelengths to pass through. Screen protectors with blue light filtering features are available for smartphones, tablets, laptops, and computer monitors.


In short, eye strain is a common issue that can significantly impact our daily lives. Understanding the causes, symptoms, and treatment is crucial for relieving eye strain and maintaining good eye health. 

If you consistently experience eye strain or if the symptoms persist despite taking preventive measures, it is advisable to consult an eye care professional for a comprehensive eye examination.