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Palming Your Way to Relieve Eye Strain?

Do you have to work long hours in front of the computer? Does your work require you to stare at the computer monitor all day long? Do you need to drive extra long miles to and from your office? Are you one of those avid book lovers with an insatiable reading habit? Is the school load so heavy that you end up having to write papers and reports all night long?

If the answer is yes to any of the questions above, chances are you have suffered from a condition called eye strain at least one time or another. A lot of time, this condition is not dangerous even though it can be annoying as hell. Simply resting your eyes can actually help solve the problem.

Eye strain is most of the time caused by a wrong physical set up of lighting and equipment. Poor lighting and incorrect positioning of the computer monitor have been blamed for this condition. Computer monitor glare and hard to read copy materials can also cause this condition.

Take note, however, that if you are suffering from eye strain, there is also a chance that it is an underlying sign of a more serious eye disease.  You should always exercise prudence and have an optometrist check up your eyes if you indeed have eye strain.

To relieve this condition, it is imperative for your eyes to take regular break times. Look at an object around 20 feet away for 20 seconds to allow your eyes to focus on something different. Closing your eyes for a few seconds can also help. Or you can just roll or blink your eyes or do any exercise to help get the eye strain away.  Complete blinking cannot be over stated for the purposes of relieving eye strain.

Another simple and really easy way to relax your eyes is through the use of a palming exercise.  The trick here is achieving a completely black environment for your tired eyes. Eliminating all the refraction errors will help you relax and alleviate that eye strain.

Steps in Palming Exercise

1.    Stimulate your retinal nerves first. Expose yourself to warm sunlight for a short period of time. Why? Lack of sunlight seems to be related to being short-sighted (myopia).  As a population we also are deficient in Vitamin D, which is also stimulated by sunlight exposure.  We need to be mindful of that excessive exposure to ultraviolet light is also linked to skin cancer. The the saying: “Everything in moderation” definitely applies here.
2.    Get comfortable while sitting on a chair.
3.    Cup your hands and use them to cover your eyes. Do not let the palms touch your eyeballs. Let your fingers run across your forehead, while the lower part of the palm should touch the cheekbones.  It is imperative that you do not put any excessive pressure on your eye balls as this will raise the fluid pressure inside your eyes and possibly expose you to a risk of glaucoma.
4.    Close your eyes lightly. There is no need to shut it real tight, as the palms should be the one blocking the light. Make sure that your hands and face are fully relaxed while doing this.
5.    Rest your elbows either on top of a table or on your lap. Take note however that you should keep your head and back straight. Again, make sure that there is no tightness in your body while doing this exercise.
6.    Maintain this posture as long as necessary.  Once you start seeing only black, then the exercise to remove your eye strain has been completed.

Eye Strain is a very significant problem. Measures to relieve it are many – palming is only one of many.  You can also visit our dedicated website on EYE STRAIN by CLICKING HERE. (http://www NULL.eyestrain NULL.com NULL.au/)

Ultimately eye strain requires a comprehensive evaluation to determine what factors need treating.

At The Eye Practice one of our specialties is diagnosing and treating eye strain.  BOOK an APPOINTMENT ONLINE by CLICKING HERE (http://www NULL.theeyepractice NULL.com NULL.au/bookeyeexam) or call us on (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.

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