Have you ever considered how the size of your mobile screen may impact your eye health? Recent research sheds light on the connection between screen size and its effects on our eyes.
In today's digital age, screens have become an integral part of our lives. Whether it's the smartphone in our pocket, the tablet on our coffee table, or the computer at work, we spend a significant amount of time staring at screens.
A study published in the BMC Ophthalmology journal focused on investigating how screen size influences eye discomfort and fatigue.
The research involved participants who had no history of eye-related medical issues and their vision was corrected to ensure a natural viewing experience.
The participants were asked to watch YouTube videos on two different screens: a 6.1-inch smartphone and a 9.7-inch tablet.
The results were eye-opening (no pun intended).
The research found that participants experienced more eye fatigue and discomfort when watching videos on the smaller smartphone screen compared to the larger tablet screen.
What's behind the discomfort?
The study delved into the reasons behind this discomfort.
It discovered that excessive accommodative convergence is needed to form a clear image when looking at a small screen with a smaller font.
This excessive eye strain can lead to quicker eye fatigue.
Close-range screen exposure can result in accommodative spasms and muscle contractions in the eye which can decrease overall ocular function over time.
While this research highlights the impact of screen size on eye health, it is essential to consider other factors as well.
Screen size isn't the only culprit
Larger screens, such as computer monitors, are not without their drawbacks.
Research from Walailak University in Thailand revealed that working on a large screen for more than two hours can lead to eye strain.
This is due to prolonged eye muscle contractions and decreased blink rates, which cause dryness and visual fatigue.
The external environment also plays a crucial role. Staring at screens in dark or poorly lit surroundings intensifies blink rate reduction, eye strain, and fatigue.
Guarding your eyes from screen-related discomfort
So, what can you do to protect your eyes from screen-related discomfort and fatigue?
1. Follow the 20-20-20 Rule: Shift your gaze every 20 minutes and focus on an object at least 20 feet away for a minimum of 20 seconds. This practice reduces eye strain and promotes better eye health.
2. Adjust Screen Brightness: Ensure that the brightness of your screen matches your external environment to reduce eye strain.
3. Use Screen Filters: Consider using a matte screen filter or blue-light protection layers for your devices.
4. Artificial Tears: Lubricate your eyes with artificial tears to prevent dryness, especially during prolonged screen time.
5. Regular Eye Checkups: Visit an eye specialist for routine checkups to monitor your vision and address any screen exposure-related problems.