Smartphone induced eye strain in young and healthy individuals

Authors

  • Rakhi Nayak Optometrist, Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Medicine, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Ananda Kumar Sharma Executive director, BPKLCOS, Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Medicine, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Sanjeeb Kumar Mishra Program coordinator, Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Medicine, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Sanjeev Bhattarai Assistant Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Medicine, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Nirajan Kumar Sah Senior optometrist, Sagarmatha Choudhary Eye Hospital, Lahan, Nepal
  • Sandip Das Sanyam Clinical Research Coordinator, Sagarmatha Choudhary Eye Hospital, Lahan, Nepal https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0554-8441

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.3126/jkmc.v9i4.38092

Keywords:

Accommodation; Asthenopia; Dry eye; Eyestrain; Smartphone

Abstract

Background: Usage of digital devices has become one's basic need. Digital eye strain is repeatedly noticed sequelae in optometry practice.

Objectives: This study aims to estimate the different aspects of eye strain.

Methodology: Altogether, 55 students with a mean age of 21.25 years, vision (≥6/9) were enrolled. A survey related to common asthenopic (eyestrain) symptoms was carried before and after reading an extract from a novel. Accommodative facility and non-invasive first tear breakup (NTBUT) time were measured before and after the reading. The viewing distance to a smartphone was measured every 20 minute.

Results: The total eye strain symptom score was significantly greater post-experiment (score = 7.07±2.84) than pre-experiment (score = 1.54±1.60, p < 0.001). Symptoms of tired eyes, sore eyes, and sleepy eyes increased significantly after 60 min of a smartphone use (p < 0.05). The mean viewing distance while using a smartphone over 60 min was 30.15 ± 3.29 cm.  There was a significant correlation between change in total symptom score and change in viewing distance (r = ˗0.301, p = 0.026). The symptom that correlated with a change in viewing distance was ‘sore eyes’ (r = ˗0.382, p = 0.04) and sleepy eyes (r= ˗0.363, p=0.06). There was a significant decrease in monocular and binocular accommodative facilities and NTBUT after 60 min of reading.

Conclusion: Closer viewing distance and eyestrain symptoms are obvious after a smartphone reading. Prolonged use of smartphones appears to have important implications for accommodative function, causing ocular symptoms having an impact on quality of life.

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Published

2020-12-31

How to Cite

Nayak, R., Sharma, A. K., Mishra, S. K., Bhattarai, S., Sah, N. K., & Sanyam, S. D. (2020). Smartphone induced eye strain in young and healthy individuals. Journal of Kathmandu Medical College, 9(4), 201–206. https://doi.org/10.3126/jkmc.v9i4.38092