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Health
Eye Strain
Feb 2014
Dr Keiki Mehta
Surgical Director and Head Ophthalmic Surgeon Mumbai

Smartphones have now become very common, their costs have gone down and they are now the preferred mode of communication. There is, however, a price to pay for all this convenience. The problem with smartphones is that the user needs to hold it very close to the eye. And that is where the problems arise. The symptoms are often eye ache, blurred vision, dry eyes from inadequate blinking, and headache. If you are already wearing spectacles or contact lenses, the problems tend to worsen even more, since the eyes now have to compensate for the optical aids you are wearing in addition to the near point activity in the eyestrain of the smartphone device.

Another hassle is sitting in the car or a bus or a train and using a cell phone. The shaking during travel increases the level of eyestrain. Interestingly enough, researchers have shown that where prolonged work needs to be done on the smartphone, the user tends to hold it closer. Excess application to near point activity can lead to myopia.

sightedness. Today’s generation of children are most at risk of developing this condition. The problems are worsened by the use of computers on a daily basis. An average active workplace involves 8 to 10 hours of computer activity. This, coupled with the added strain of smartphone use, will invariably, over time, lead to headache, browache and eye pain along with redness, irritation and dryness.