With the recent coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, researchers wanted to see how much time spent in front of screens affected people’s eyes. Google form was used to create a pretested online self-reported questionnaire that was then emailed out to participants. The correlations between the qualitative variables were examined using the chi-square or fisher’s exact test. Ocular health risk factors were studied using univariate and multivariate logistic regression. There were 435 replies total, with women accounting for 48.5% (N=211) and men for 51.5% (N=224). The average age of the group was 35. During the lockdown, 89% of participants said they spent more time in front of screens. As a result of spending more time in front of screens (P=0.001), younger individuals reported increased symptoms of digital eye strain (DES) (P=0.003). This research found that eyestrain (52.8%, N=230) and headache (31.3%, N=136) were the most common symptoms of digital eye strain. About 3-quarters (354/435) of the sample reported having at least 1 symptom that could be attributed to excessive screen time. Although DES does not pose a threat to eyesight, the discomfort it can cause can have a domino effect on a person’s psychological, emotional, and social health. The study highlighted the rise in digital screen time during the epidemic and the resultant eye strain. It is extremely important to get the word out about the dangers of staring at screens all day and the steps people can take to protect their eyes.

Source: journals.lww.com/jfmpc/Fulltext/2022/07000/Effect_of_increased_screen_time_on_eyes_during.40.aspx