24 Mar 20-20-20 Rule
What’s the 20-20-20 rule? If you are like many, you spend a lot of time looking a screens. Whether it’s your smartphone, computer, TV or other digital devices, all that screen time can lead to digital eye strain. Digital eye strain is the physical discomfort that may follow after two or more hours of digital device use. Symptoms can include: red, dry or irritated eyes, blurred vision, neck/back/shoulder pain, and headaches. But the 20-20-20 rule can help.
Digital Eye Strain
People have become so accustomed to their eyes feeling tired at the end of the day, they just accept it. In honor of March’s designation as Workplace Eye Wellness Month, we are sharing some tips on how to avoid digital eye strain using the 20-20-20 rule. But the only way to understand why you should follow it, is knowing what symptoms can arise as a result of too much screen time.
Symptoms of Digital Eye Strain:
- Eye fatigue and/or discomfort
- Dry eyes, itchy eyes, irritated eyes
- Blurry or double vision
- Neck pain / shoulder pain / back pain
How to Follow the 20-20-20 Rule
Because most you’re not likely to cut back on your digital device use, get into making the 20-20-20 rule a daily habit. To follow the 20-20-20 rule, take a break every 20 minutes, to look at something 20 feet away, for 20 seconds. While doing this exercise, make a conscious effort to blink as often as possible.
How to Tell if You’re 20 Feet Away
Although you won’t be able to measure 20 feet, the point is to focus on something further away from you like a window for example. While doing this, try to get up at least every hour to walk around the room. You might even try closing your eyes or looking out a window at some aspect of nature that brings you peace.
Taking a Break Every 20 Seconds Helps Keep Your Eyes Relaxed
According to a few studies, it takes your eyes about 20 seconds to relax. By giving your eyes the time they need to recharge and refocus, your eyes will feel a lot better!
By Doing it Every 20 Minutes it Becomes a Habit
If you spend a lot of time in front of your computer, you already know that eye strain and fatigue are common problems associated with prolonged computer use. For this reason, it’s important to get into the habit of following the 20-20-20 rule to lessen the impact your digital devices have on your eyes. To do this, set a reminder every 20 minutes and try to be as consistent as possible. Your eyes will thank you for it!
Solutions to Reduce Digital Eye Strain at Murata Eyecare
Digital eye strain is easy to treat and can be diagnosed through a comprehensive eye exam. For anyone who is experiencing eye strain as a result of prolonged computer use, there are specialized lenses that can help relieve the symptoms. Computer glasses are a great solution for reducing both digital eye strain and the potentially damaging effects that increased digital use can have on vision.
At Murata Eyecare Optometry, we believe that eye health and vision care are important factors for living a healthy lifestyle. Which is why we work with you to prevent or reduce the development of the symptoms associated with digital eye strain. If you would like to book an eye exam or have more questions about the 20-20-20 rule, contact our office at (805) 522-7007.