Watching mobile for long time ? know the side effects , tips to reduce strain

Mobile phones have become an indispensable part of our lives. We use them for communication, entertainment, education, work and more. However, spending too much time staring at a mobile screen can have negative effects on our health, especially our eyes. In this article, we will explore some of the side effects of watching mobile screen for long time, and how to prevent or reduce them.

How does it affect different ages of people from infants to adults?

Watching mobile screen for long time can affect people of different ages in different ways. Some of the common effects are:

  • Infants and toddlers: According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children under 18 months should avoid screen time altogether, except for video chatting with family or friends. Screen time can interfere with their brain development, language skills, social skills and attention span. It can also disrupt their sleep patterns and cause behavioral problems.
  • Preschoolers and school-age children: Children between 2 to 5 years should limit their screen time to one hour per day, and children between 6 to 12 years should have consistent limits on their screen time. Too much screen time can affect their physical activity, academic performance, creativity, mood and self-esteem. It can also expose them to inappropriate or harmful content, cyberbullying and online predators.
  • Teenagers and young adults: Teenagers and young adults should balance their screen time with other healthy activities, such as physical exercise, social interaction, hobbies and sleep. Excessive screen time can affect their mental health, emotional regulation, body image, sleep quality and productivity. It can also increase their risk of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions.
  • Adults and seniors: Adults and seniors should also be mindful of their screen time and its impact on their health. Too much screen time can cause eye strain, headaches, neck pain, back pain, insomnia and fatigue. It can also affect their memory, concentration, mood and relationships.

Watching mobile for long time ? know the side effects , tips to reduce strain


How to not strain eyes watching mobile screen?

One of the most common side effects of watching mobile screen for long time is eye strain. Eye strain occurs when the eyes get tired from intense or prolonged use. It can cause symptoms such as dry eyes, blurred vision, red eyes, burning sensation, itching, tearing, headache and sensitivity to light.

To prevent or reduce eye strain from watching mobile screen, you can follow these tips:

  • Follow the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, look away from your screen and focus on something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This helps relax your eye muscles and reduce eye fatigue.
  • Blink more often: Blinking helps lubricate your eyes and prevent them from drying out. When you stare at a screen, you tend to blink less than normal. Try to blink more frequently or use artificial tears if needed.
  • Adjust your screen settings: Make sure your screen brightness is comfortable for your eyes and matches the ambient light around you. Avoid using your phone in very bright or very dark environments. You can also use a blue light filter or night mode to reduce the amount of blue light emitted by your screen. Blue light can suppress the production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates your sleep cycle.
  • Use proper posture: Hold your phone at a comfortable distance from your eyes (about an arm’s length) and at a slightly downward angle (about 15 degrees). This helps reduce the strain on your eyes and neck. Avoid tilting your head or hunching your shoulders while using your phone.
  • Take breaks: Apart from following the 20-20-20 rule, you should also take longer breaks from your screen every hour or so. Get up from your seat, stretch your body, move around and do some eye exercises. This helps improve your blood circulation, relax your muscles and refresh your eyes.

Tips and Exercises recommended to avoid eye strain

In addition to the tips mentioned above, you can also try some tips and exercises to avoid eye strain from watching mobile screen. Some of them are:

  • Massage your eyes: Gently massage your eyelids and the area around your eyes with your fingertips. Use circular motions and apply light pressure. This helps stimulate the blood flow and relax the eye muscles.
  • Palming: Rub your palms together until they feel warm. Then cup them over your closed eyes without touching them. Feel the warmth spreading over your eyes and breathe deeply. Do this for a few minutes or until you feel relaxed.
  • Eye rolling: Roll your eyes in a clockwise direction for a few seconds, then switch to a counter-clockwise direction. Repeat this several times. This helps stretch and strengthen the eye muscles.
  • Focus shifting: Hold a pen or your finger at arm’s length in front of your eyes. Focus on the tip of the pen or finger, then slowly bring it closer to your nose, keeping your focus on it. Then move it back to arm’s length, still focusing on it. Repeat this 10 times. This helps improve your eye flexibility and focus.
  • Eye fluttering: Rapidly open and close your eyes for a few seconds, then relax. Repeat this several times. This helps lubricate your eyes and relieve tension.

Recommended brightness settings to prevent eye strain

The brightness of your screen can affect your eye strain and comfort. If your screen is too bright or too dim, it can cause your eyes to work harder to adjust to the contrast and glare. To prevent eye strain, you should adjust your screen brightness according to the ambient light around you.

A general rule of thumb is to keep your screen brightness at a level that allows you to see the content clearly without squinting or straining your eyes. You can use the auto-brightness feature on your phone to automatically adjust the brightness based on the surrounding light. Alternatively, you can manually adjust the brightness using the slider in the settings menu.

You can also use a blue light filter or night mode to reduce the amount of blue light emitted by your screen, especially at night or in low-light conditions. Blue light can interfere with your sleep cycle and cause eye strain and fatigue. You can activate the blue light filter or night mode in the settings menu or use a third-party app for more customization options.

What to do when strain due to long hours of watch

If you experience eye strain due to long hours of watching mobile screen, you should stop using your phone and rest your eyes as soon as possible. You can also try some of the tips and exercises mentioned above to relieve the symptoms and prevent further damage.

However, if your eye strain persists or worsens, you should consult an eye doctor for a proper diagnosis and treatment. Eye strain can sometimes be a sign of an underlying eye condition, such as refractive error, dry eye syndrome, glaucoma, cataract or macular degeneration. You may need glasses, medication, surgery or other interventions depending on your condition.

Eye strain is a common and preventable problem that can affect anyone who uses a mobile screen for long time. By following some simple tips and exercises, you can protect your eyes from harm and enjoy your screen time without compromising your health.