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In the digital age, screens are more prevalent than they’ve ever been. We use it during our daily life and doing so can impact our vision in the long run if we’re not careful.
After attending to my annual eye exam in early June, I decided to take my chances on trying out eyeglasses from a reputable online optical shop. One of the issues I face on a daily basis is eye strain from prolonged computer use. The eyeglasses I ended up getting were single vision, UV+ Blue Blocker lenses that came free with anti-reflective (AR) coating.
What are single vision, UV+ Blue Blocker, AR coated lenses?
Depending on your eyesight, your lenses prescription may either be single or bifocal.
Single vision prescriptions have power over the whole lens and offers one focus for the eyes. There are for people who have issues seeing near or far (although not both). In a prescription, the ADD(value used for bifocal/progressive lenses) section is left blank.
Bifocal / Progressive Vision
Bifocal / Progressive prescriptions are used for people who can’t see near or far. They have an increased magnified power and allows for multiple prescriptions in one lens (ADD) allowing one to see closer and further. Traditional bifocal lens have both near and far lenses and has a line separating the two (upper section is for distance and lower section is for a nearer prescription)
Blue Light / UV+ Blue Blocker
With all of our electronic devices, be it our computers, tablets, mobile phones, we are all getting exposure to blue light known to cause eye strain and can damage the retina which is responsible for sharp and clear vision. Too much exposure to UV light can increase one’s risk to lead to macular degeneration (retina deterioration) and even cataracts if eyes are not protected. Eyeglasses with this feature helps block blue light and provide UV protection coverage to protect the eyes.
Anti-reflective (AR) Coating
Anti-reflective (AR) coating helps with reducing the reflection of light from eyeglasses lenses. It sharpens vision while reducing glare and halos from sunlight and when driving at night. It also provides more comfort for prolonged computer use.
Shipping was around $10 and the package arrived just a week after I had ordered it. Overall, for a $20 frame and $16.95 lenses (with its overall total coming around to $35.95 USD), I am quite pleased with its quality, affordability and ease of ordering.
The process was simple. All I needed was my eyeglasses prescription (along with my PD length (pupillary distance: distance in mm between the left and right pupil), check the features I wanted on the lens and checkout.
One caveat would be its frame which is quite thin and a bit more fragile than my old Rayban Clubmaster Optic glasses so I need to be extra careful and gentle while cleaning the lenses but other than that, after using the eyeglasses for a week, I’ve felt a noticeably decreased amount of eye strain and have been able to do much more work on the computer for a prolonged amount of time without experiencing headaches, migraines, tired eyes and blurred vision.
Tips on Preventing Eye Strain
Apart from getting specific glasses to counter blue light exposure from computer screens and devices, here are some tips on preventing eye strain.
- Get an annual eye exam. (Preventative care is a must in order to help diagnose current and prevent future eye symptoms.)
- Purchase computer eyewear that have light blue blockers. (For those that wear contact lenses, getting computer eyeglasses would be beneficial since they can become dry, irritated and increase computer vision problems)
- Adjust your monitor settings. (You can use a program called F.lux which changes the monitor lighting based on the time of day. It works by warming the monitor settings to display less blue wavelength light. Not only is this beneficial for reducing eye strain, but it can also help the body produce more melatonin which is a compound that aids in sleep. If you do work at night, blue light from your screen mimics blue light from the sun and signals our bodies that it is day time preventing our bodies from producing melatonin. A warmer screen setting helps counter that and aid’s in producing the compound melatonin necessary for a good night’s sleep.)
- Exercise your eyes using the 20/20/20 Rule. (Every 20 minutes, stare at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. It’s simple, free and gives you a moment to think as well. Also you’re eyes become more relaxed when you look at something far away.)
- Blink more often to avoid dry eyes. (People are known to blink less when they are using their computer compared to when you’re looking at something else and doing so increases your risk in dry eye symptoms since it causes tears in eyes to evaporate quicker. Blinking more helps keep eyes moist but you can also use lubricating eye drops to help with dry eyes.
- Set up proper lighting. (Try to have as much as natural light as you can in your work space. Avoid using your computer in complete darkness where it is the only source of light and reduce the use of fluorescent lights because this type of overhead lighting is much harsher to the eyes.)