Healthy Tips

How to Avoid Eye Strain

Hands typing at a laptop computer

We’re spending an average of 8 hours and 47 minutes a day looking at screens according to a Nielsen study. 1 From our phones, to tablets, to personal computers, to video games, there are countless ways we’re straining our eyes on a daily basis.

According to the American Optometric Association2, 41 percent of Americans say they’ve experienced eye strain, and 45 percent cited neck or back pain after prolonged use of a computer or handheld mobile device. Unlike printed type, computer characters are brightest at the center and lighter on the edges. This causes your eyes to jump around as they try to focus, making them tired and affecting other areas of the upper body. By following a few preventive tips from EyeMed Vision Care, you can help to reduce eye strain:

  • Get an eye exam before starting a job that requires extensive computer use.
  • Use a flat-panel monitor or LCD screen that has crisper resolutions.
  • Place the monitor at eye level about 20 to 26 inches away from you. Always use the computer in proper light.
  • Blink more often to keep your eyes moist.
  • Take breaks from your computer to rest your eyes.
  • Visit your eye doctor annually to monitor and manage symptoms, unless otherwise recommended by your eye doctor.


  1. Nielsen Total Audience Report, Q1 2016
  2. American Optometric Association — Video Games and Vision: How Healthy Eyes Can Help Beat Your High Score

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When we spend so much of that time on our screens, we lose time for the other things we value. So, think twice next time you reach for your screen of choice. Check out our vision deals for great discounts on eye exams, glasses, and contacts to support your best vision health.

This content is not intended to substitute for informed medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.


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