Vision Therapy in Orlando

The Connection Between Screen Time and Dry Eye

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Alleviating Digital Eye Strain for Comfortable Vision

Do your eyes feel dry, irritated, or fatigued after a lengthy day spent scrolling through social media, tackling a barrage of emails, or streaming your favorite content? If so, you might be wondering whether screen time could be the culprit behind these discomforts.

Indeed, while digital devices have brought convenience, they've also introduced a new challenge for eye health: digital eye strain, which is often accompanied by dry eye symptoms.

boy playing VR game


Understanding Digital Eye Strain and Its Link to Dry Eyes

woman using mobile phone

Digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, is a condition that arises when you spend extended periods gazing at screens. Its symptoms include dry eyes, fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches.

Several factors contribute to dry eyes during prolonged screen use:

  • Reduced Blink Rate

    While focusing on screens, people tend to blink less frequently. This reduced blink rate can lead to reduced tear production and increased tear evaporation, resulting in dry eyes.

  • Blue Light Exposure

    Digital screens emit blue light, disrupting the circadian rhythm. Disrupted sleep, in turn, can contribute to dry eye symptoms.

  • Poor Posture

    Incorrect screen placement or poor posture can cause you to open your eyes wider, increasing exposure to air and tear evaporation.

  • Reduced Blink Quality

    Frequent screen time can lead to incomplete blinks, where the upper and lower eyelids do not meet fully, causing inadequate tear film spreading and reduced oil secretion from meibomian glands.


The Effects of Excessive Screen Time on Children's Eyes

Digital eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome, is a condition that arises when you spend extended periods gazing at screens. Its symptoms include dry eyes, fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches.

Several factors contribute to dry eyes during prolonged screen use:

  • Eye Fatigue and Discomfort

    Excessive screen time can lead to eye fatigue, causing discomfort, reduced vision clarity, and headaches. Children may also lose interest in activities like reading due to eye strain .

  • Dry and Irritated Eyes

    Long screen sessions can result in dry and irritated eyes, as prolonged screen focus reduces blinking frequency. Maintaining a stable tear film on the eye's surface is crucial for clear vision, especially for children adapting to screens designed for adults.

  • Reduced Focus Flexibility

    Children who spend extended periods focusing on screens may struggle to adjust to distance vision afterward. Although this is usually a short-term issue, it highlights the importance of balanced screen time and outdoor activities.

  • Risk of Developing Myopia

    Excessive indoor screen time deprives children of essential natural daylight exposure, impacting their eye development. Studies suggest a link between increased indoor time and a higher risk of nearsightedness (myopia) in children. Balancing screen use with outdoor play is crucial for healthy eyes.

woman viewing tablet in bed


Treating Dry Eyes Caused by Screen Time

Dry eyes induced by excessive screen use may range from mild to severe, with severe cases potentially leading to permanent eye surface damage. Therefore, it's essential to take steps to alleviate these symptoms.

If you're someone who spends a considerable amount of time in front of screens, you can adopt several strategies to reduce the risk of digital eye strain and dry eyes:

  • Follow the 20-20-20 Rule: Every 20 minutes of screen time, take a 20-second break to focus on something at least 20 feet away.
  • Adjust Screen Settings: Modify the font size, brightness, and blue light emission to create a more comfortable viewing experience.
  • Proper Lighting: Ensure your screen is not overly bright, and your surroundings are well-lit.
  • Blink More: Always remember to blink regularly to keep your eyes moist.
  • Stay Hydrated: Maintaining adequate hydration can help support tear production.

Use Artificial Tears: Lubricating eye drops can relieve dry eyes while using screens.

Patient Reviews
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33 Reviews
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- May. 17, 2024
I could’ve been more welcoming by Dr Smith and his entire team! This is my new place for eye care ... services. You all rock!
- Dec. 21, 2023
Great attentive and knowledgeable Doctor and staff. They take the extra time needed even when busy. ... Thank you!
- Jul. 30, 2023
Thank you so much for taking me in last minute before my trip out of the country! The staff and Doct... or were very nice and professional. I came in as. New patient last minute and was treated like I had been there forever. Highly recommend!
- May. 25, 2023
I'm so happy with my glasses. Wow this was the best service I have received in years. I love my gl... asses. The entire location is so organized n clean! Thank you bunchezz to the Dr. N his team!
- Jul. 11, 2022
The whole staff is great. Feel family when I'm there.
- Apr. 27, 2022
I was in Orlando working & lost a nose pad off of my glasses. Dr Smith's office was the closest eye... care place so I went in without an appointment. I told the young lady at the counter what happened & she took my glasses & came back with 2 new nose pads & wouldn't let me pay her for them. Thank you so much, I wish I'd got the young ladies name but she's a keeper.
- Jan. 17, 2021
Fantastic staff and clean facilities. Dr. Smith is amazing with kids and adults alike. Highly recomm... ended for all eye care needs.
- Jul. 15, 2020
Amazing always 🙂
- Mar. 20, 2020
We Have been going to them for years. Love them, love the selection and love how friendly and help... ful they are. I get both glasses and contacts and always have been amazing. Prices are great, we have private insurance.
- Nov. 12, 2019
Growing up on Long Island, I'm more used to a family run business than a chain of stores. Finding Or... lando Eyecare was very surprising and refreshing. Everyone was so kind, courteous and professional. Very glad I found this place! I ended up staying an extra 20 mins just to chat with the staff about the family who ran the place for years. Like stepping back in time...in the best possible way! 5 stars all the way!!
- Jun. 08, 2019
I started going to Orlando Eye Care at least 25 years ago when then Dr. Devine was the doctor. I was... there as Dr. Smith started to do exams and Dr. Devine would be in the office and I saw the smooth transition. I never experienced any unprofessionalism. The personable care is absolutely wonderful. Dr. Smith and his quirky self made visits wonderful. The office staff was always amazing. I'm super thankful to know that such a place still exists in a world of so many changes. My insurance changed many times. I now have insurance that has Orlando Eye Care In-Network! Yaay! Thank you Dr. Smith, Mary, and Staff! C.Burke
- May. 22, 2019
I’ve been coming to Orlando Eye Care for 21 years. I have never had a bad experience. Everyone in ... the building is very personable and friendly.
- May. 14, 2019
Great experience, Dr. Smith and Mary are awesome, very friendly staff. Doesn't feel like a revolving... door chain store where they just try to get you in and out, feels like home. I will be back.
- Jul. 03, 2018
Although they were not able to repair my glasses (frames have been discontinued) their professionali... sm and courtesy were outstanding if it wasn't for the fact I was on vacation and not from the area they would become my primary care when it comes to eyesight
- Mar. 29, 2018
I have been a customer of Orlando Eyecare for serveral years and trust in Dr. R. Kirk Smith and his ... staff. They are through and quickly outfit you with not just a pair of glasses, but the right glasses that match you and your face. Lisa, makes you feel she is there just for you and the other staff works to insure you get the most for you dollar. I highly recommend their services!
- Sep. 28, 2017
Honestly, the best eye care staff I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Sarah took care of me fro... m soup to nuts. Very patient with me and my very picky change of minds. Prices are VERY good and exceptionally reasonable. Highly recommended, but you should definitely make time to speak with Sarah. Might even want to bring her Starbucks when you show up! Works wonders with appointments!
- Aug. 22, 2017
Absolutely LOVE the Staff at Orlando Eye Care. Everybody is super friendly and knowledgeable. I woul... d never trust anybody else with my Eyes!
- May. 05, 2017
I LOVE coming here. They always have the cutest glasses and the best help! Getting new glasses is my... favorite day of the year because of them.
- Sep. 15, 2016
I regret the day that, due to Orlando Eyecare not being a member of the Humana (my new health care i... nsurer) network, I was unable to continue my 36 year association with Drs. Devine and Smith. The excellent personalized service, along with a caring office staff, fully met my needs over the many years, and I hope that one fine day I can once again benefit from your service, as I am totally dissatisfied with the alternatives that I have been forced to use. Michael Segre-Lewis Apopka
- Aug. 24, 2016
Been going there for years. Even though I moved to Clermont 2 years ago, I continue to make the tri... p to Orlando to see Dr. Smith and his staff.

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Dry Eyes in Orlando

Our optometry practice in Orlando

Photograph of R. Kirk Smith
Hours
  • Monday 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Tuesday 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Wednesday 8:30 am - 1:00 pm
  • Thursday 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Friday 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Saturday Closed
  • Sunday Closed
Insurance Plans
  • Aetna
  • Avesis
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Cigna
  • Davis Vision
  • EyeMed
  • Humana
  • Medicare Part B
  • Spectera
  • United Healthcare
  • VSP

man using computer

Consult Orlando Eyecare for Digital Eye Strain Relief

Although lifestyle changes can be helpful, more effective dry eye management strategies may be necessary in some cases. Orlando Eyecare provides a range of treatments to restore your family's eyesight.

If you or a loved one suffers from ongoing dry eye symptoms due to prolonged screen use, our experienced eye care professionals can provide relief. Make an appointment with Orlando Eyecare to discuss dry eye management options. Let's work together to protect their eyesight and ensure a bright future.

(407) 295-1234