Help and frequently asked questions

What is the impact of eye strain?


In most cases, eye strain is a consequence of focusing intensely on an activity or object for extended periods of time. Overworking your eyes in this manner can increase the possibility of ocular fatigue. Eye strain can be caused by many things, from staring at a computer for long periods of time, driving for a significant distance, reading fine print or doing a lot of detailed work up close.

When you do these types of activities, you tend not to blink as often as you normally would. This can increase the risk of dry eyes and lead to some of the characteristics of eye strain.These activities can also cause you to clench the muscles around the eyelids, face, temples and jaw, which can result in the sensation of discomfort or even pain. If you have a refractive vision problem (caused by irregularities in the shape of the eye) this may also lead to eye strain. 

What are the symptoms of eye strain?

The symptoms of eye strain include a tired or sore, burning and/or itchy feeling in the eye area. Your eyes may also get watery or overly dry. You might find that you have difficulty focusing, an increased sensitivity to light, blurred or double vision and other sensations of eye discomfort accompanied by headaches.

Does straining your eyes damage them?

The good news is that eye strain does not lead to any permanent damage on your vision, even though it feels uncomfortable or unpleasant at times. It's not a serious condition or disease, but a symptom of overworked eyes.You can alleviate your eye strain by taking steps to reduce the triggers. For example, if you need to look at your screen for a long time, take regular breaks to look away and focus on other objects in the distance. This will relax the muscle inside the eye and help with ocular fatigue. Overly bright or dim lighting will also cause you to strain your eyes, so you need to do what you can to ensure you have sufficient lighting for your work.

Regular eye tests are also a good way to monitor the health of your vision.  Can eye strain cause a loss of balance or a blood vessel leak in the iris? Eye strain does not usually lead to a loss of balance or sensations of dizziness. Heavily overworked eyes may lead to a subconjunctival haemorrhage or the bursting of blood vessels on the white section of your eye, but this will not usually leak onto the iris. If you do notice any blood on or in front of your iris, you need to seek medical attention immediately.