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Staying Safe with Your Smartphone

Lately, it seems that we're addicted to smartphones. Smart phones, tablets and handheld devices ensure our access to our email, text messages and the Internet wherever we are. However as handheld devices are made with little screens, most users often hold their smartphones much closer than they would hold newspapers and books. This gives way to a number of demands on your vision that make your eyes work in a different way than they usually do when you read regular small print.

It's a challenge for your eyes to focus on the small images and text you see on the small screens of smartphones. Eventually, research shows this may lead to problems with focus and vision, especially for those who already wear glasses. If you already wear glasses, holding your phone or tablet too close can make it even harder for your eyes to correct for distance. This puts strain on your eyes, and you wind up with headaches, which aren't pleasant.

But that's not all. There are other symptoms that can be caused by these habits, including blurred vision and dry eyes, because excessive screen time reduces your blink rate.

In order to prevent eyestrain and blurred vision resulting from the use of our smartphones and tablets, as eye care professionals, we recommend that you hold the phone further away, and make the text a little bigger, so you can still read it. It's also a good idea to work towards using your device in shorter increments, and letting your eyes have regular breaks. And after that, if you still experience headaches, you might be far-sighted, and need glasses to fix that. Come see us for an exam, if this is something you're experiencing. We can't give up technology, but it's important to be smart about how we use it, in order to help preserve our vision.