Effect of Gadgets on the Eyes

Effect of Gadgets on the Eyes

Gadgets have a big influence on people's lives today. Communication is a basic need, so nowadays gadgets are no longer a luxury item like they were a decade ago. We frequently come across people of all ages, from the lower to the upper classes, who have all used gadgets. With the sophistication of the features contained in gadgets, gadgets are used to simplify tasks and work or as a filler in spare time, starting as a means of communication, games, agendas, watching movies, and knowing the latest news. Gadgets are so attached to everyday life that we often ignore the impact that gadgets have on our health.

Excessive use of gadgets without realizing it can cause dry eye disorders, tired eyes, or asthenopia. There is also a term that we know as Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), which includes dry eyes and tired eyes. CVS, or computer vision syndrome, is a collection of symptoms of eye health problems due to focusing the eyes on the monitor screen continuously for 3 hours or more a day. In children, excessive use of gadgets can cause an increased risk of myopia,  nearsightedness, or both.

Generally, CVS sufferers will complain of headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, neck pain, red eyes, double vision, difficulty focusing the eyes, and even fatigue. Patients who experience dry eyes will complain of red, sore, itchy, and watery eyes. Meanwhile, complaints of tired eyes (or eyestrain orasthenopia) include eyes feeling tired, uncomfortable, and watery; they can be accompanied by headaches and blurry vision.

In children, complaints of dry eyes are difficult for them to convey; usually they are marked by complaints of frequent blinking. Although allergies can also cause complaints of frequent blinking.

CVS occurs because the eye muscles become tense and tired from looking at a computer screen for too long, and the eyes also become dry because, generally, the number of blinks a person makes when looking at a computer screen decreases so that the eyes lack tears. Yet in one minute, to keep the eyes moist, a person must blink at least 17 times. These symptoms can also be exacerbated by lights that are too bright or air conditioning winds that are too strong, causing dry eyes.

In children, excessive use of gadgets can cause an increased risk of nearsightedness or myopia. If a child already has a tendency to be nearsighted due to genetic factors that are passed down from parents who have myopia, then the risk of adding myopia to the child's eyes can be faster with excessive use of gadgets. It's not the gadgets that cause myopia but the activities of children who are used to seeing objects at close range excessively. It will distract and defocus their eyes on distant objects. The risk of myopia can appear earlier or the added minus can be bigger.

CVS complaints are temporary and can be overcome by resting. Computer vision syndrome is not dangerous and can heal by itself, but of course it will interfere with activities and work if you don't understand how to prevent it.

Ways to handle these complaints include:

  • Using moisturizing eye drops to treat dry eyes
  • Rest your eyes by looking 20 feet (6 meters) away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes while staring at the monitor screen continuously, or what we know as the 20-20-20 rule.
  • Carry out regular eye examinations at the eye doctor at least once every 6 months.
  • Rest your eyes by looking 20 feet (6 meters) away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes while staring at the monitor screen continuously according to the 20-20-20 rule.
  • Adjust the room's lighting and monitor screen. If you often use a laptop or computer for activities, you should place the monitor about 50 to 60 centimeters from your eyes. The lighting from the monitor should not be too bright or too dim. The monitor screen is positioned so as to avoid glare from windows or excessive room lighting. So, monitor light and lighting in the room should be moderate.
  • When using a smart phone or tablet, the font or writing size can be enlarged and set at a distance of approximately 30–40 cm from the eye and lower than eye level. The center of the gadget screen is between 10–23 cm below the eye position.

The human eye is only able to see light with a wavelength of 400 nm–760 nm, which is called visible light. Visible light is needed by our eyes in the process of vision so that we can recognize various colors of objects. Visible light also has bad side effects, especially blue light, which has a wavelength of 415–455 nm. Blue light is everywhere around us; everyone is at risk of being exposed to blue light. Sources of blue light include the sun, televisions, smartphones, and other gadgets; LED screens; and even fluorescent lights. The accumulation of long-term exposure to blue light that enters the eye can accelerate macular degeneration.

The macula is the part of the retina (the nerve lining of the eye) that functions as central vision. Patients with macular degeneration will experience problems with their central vision because the cells in the macula have been damaged by exposure to UV rays and blue light. Unfortunately, this disease cannot be cured and is a cause of blindness.

To overcome this, you need eyeglass lenses that can filter out blue light radiation (commonly called blue cut To overcome this, you need eyeglass lenses that can filter out blue light radiation (commonly called "blue cut lenses"), you need to stop smoking and adopt a healthy lifestyle, and you shouldn't forget to consume foods that contain the anti-oxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. Food sources rich in lutein and zeaxanthin include vegetables and fruits such as kale, spinach, broccoli, turnip greens, sweet corn, tomatoes, peas, beans, eggs, oranges, and carrots.

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