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Why Eye Strain Should Not Be Taken Lightly

eyestrain 1Although Eye Strain is commonly experienced by people from all ages, this is something that also needs some serious attention. This eye ailment is technically referred to as asthenopia. Generally, people who are suffering from this problem have difficulty in seeing clearly because of the fatigue or pain which is felt around the eyes.

Eye strain could be a result of different things. Activities which force the eyes to be intensely focused may overwork the muscles, as well as the other parts. Extended hours of reading, writing, driving, watching television or using the computer are among the common causes of eye strain.

More on eye strain is available on our main website. (http://www NULL.theeyepractice NULL.com NULL.au/eye-strain/)

Initial Symptoms of Eye Strain

It does not take an eye doctor to diagnose the initial symptoms of this eye problem. Among which are the following:

•    Feeling of heaviness in the area around the eyes which can also lead to pain

•    Headache

•    Blurriness of vision or having double vision

•    Excessive production of tears

•    Redness of eyes which can be coupled with itchiness and dryness

•    Difficulty in focusing on smaller details

•    Sore back and neck

•    When all these symptoms occur together it is called computer vision syndrome.

Remedy and Treatment

When the initial symptoms are already observed, it is important to take necessary actions and get ample rest for the eyes. That way, the situation would not become worse. Among the simple remedies for eye strain or asthenopia are the following:

•    If pain is felt around the eyes and forehead, gentle massage can be a good solution. This means doing a circular motion around the eyes, temples and above the eyebrows.

•    Closing the eyes for one to two minutes can also help. While the eyes are closed, allow the eye balls to move around from left to right or up and down.

•    If working on a computer, standing up for a while, walking around and refocusing the eyes on a distant object or view will help in preventing eye strain.  It is also important to concentrate on blinking fully and regularly.  Eye Strain induce by lack of blinking when looking at a computer screen for many hours is probably the most common issue.

•   Recently excessive exposure to blue light and computer screen flicker have been shown to cause eye strain.  Upgrading to one of the new computer screen supplied by BenQ is the way to go.

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Risks

It is important to pay close attention to eye strain because if it remains untreated, it could lead to various ailments in the long run. It is possible to develop astigmatism, nearsightedness, farsightedness or experience recurring migraine. Improper care for the eyes will also lead to intolerable consequences such as poorer vision, permanent blurriness of eyesight and other eye discomfort. For individuals who still have a 20/20 vision, they might need to wear glasses or contact lenses in no time due to refractive error.

Preventive Measures

Since this eye problem can also lead to more serious ailments, it is important to have annual eye check up, especially for individuals who overuse their eyes everyday. That way, eye doctors can immediately detect if vision impairment is starting to develop. More importantly, the doctors can clarify whether the symptoms being felt are merely due to strain or could be a result of a more serious problem.

When doing activities which involve intense focusing of the eyes, it is important to have breaks too. This will prevent straining of muscles which lead to this eye ailment.

Taking regular breaks we call the 20/20/20 rule.  This involves taking a break every 20 minutes, standing for 20 seconds and looking into the distance and blinking 20 times.

Eye Strain is a very complex eye condition.  Proper consultation by an expert optometrist should be your first port of call.

Dr Jim Kokkinakis Optometrist of The Eye Practice in Sydney CBD has been seeing eye strain eye problems from when the PC hit the desk top in the 80’s.

An appointment can be made to see him by using the Contact / Enquiry form above or calling (02) 9290 1899.

About the Author

Dr Jim Kokkinakis (Optometrist) graduated in 1983 from the Optometry School University of NSW. He is currently a Senior Lecturer there and regular speaker to both Optometrists and Ophthalmologists in Australia and Internationally. He has a specialist clinical practice in the Sydney CBD with interests in Eye Strain, Computer Vision problems, Treatment of Eye Diseases and complex Contact lens Fittings.

Comments (5)

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  1. nwokoma folake says:

    dear doctor, the optometrist in the clinic where I work just saw a patient with astenopic strain and he prescribed Maxine or septic eyedrop for him combined with chloramphenicol, pls what is the standard treatment for such especially when the patient has red eyes with it thanks

    • nwokoma folake says:

      I meant maxidex eye drops or beoptic n eye drops

    • admin says:

      It is impossible to judge whether this is correct treatment without seeing the patient. If the patient only had asthenopic eye strain then only lubricant eye drops are appropriate combined with appropriate glasses. Maxidex and betoptic and chloramphenicol have no role for asthenopia. Maybe there was a lot more going on than you realise.

  2. Priya Alice says:

    Three years before when I was get stressed I used to cry a lot. Later whenever I used cry my eyes used to be pain. Nowadays when I was in bright light or when I travel my evens get pained heavy, feeling tiredness in my eyes and it last for two days. Please give me some suggestions doctor!

    • admin says:

      Crying a lot can disturb the integrity of the tear film which is made up of oil, water and mucous. A lot of crying releases mainly salty water, which will wash out the other components. Without trying to be smart, laughing is far better than crying. Your eyes are now slightly dry and if you do any significant amount of computer work (greater than 2 hours) you will experience the above symptoms. I think you need to see a dry eye specialist. Where are you located? My responses can be slow so if you need a more prompt answer send an enquiry through a form on this website found on the top right.

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