Tired, itchy eyes, blurry vision, and trouble focusing can all be signs of digital eye strain. Some of the most common culprits include staring at computers and other digital devices while you read, write, and watch your favorite shows. With back-to-school season in full swing, now is the perfect time to be aware of the causes of digital eye strain and the preventive steps you can take to maintain healthy eyes for yourself and your entire family.

Try these eight simple steps to reduce your risk of digital eye strain:

  1. Position yourselfan arm’s length away from screens for optimal viewing distance.
  2. Adjust your lightingby minimizing surrounding bright light; close blinds to reduce outside light, and turn down overhead lights or use low wattage light bulbs to reduce indoor light.
  3. Set the brightness, text size and color on your display settings to your comfort level.
  4. Try the 20-20-20 method: Every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break from staring at the screen and focus on something 20 feet away.
  5. Take frequent breaks to give your eyes—and your brain—a chance to rest.
  6. Blink often to keep your eyes moist and to prevent dryness and irritation.
  7. Schedule a comprehensive eye exam,and let your vision care provider know how much time you spend in front of digital screens.
  8. Consider switching to eyewear with digital eyestrain reducing capabilities,especially if you wear contact lenses, progressive lenses, or bifocals.
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