Long days in front of the computer. The enemy of good eyesight.
Perfect timing, this post – relating to those long days being focused up close.
I have 10 hour days in front of a screen this week and after yesterday, I can feel my eyes hurting when I close them and can feel the pull immediately upon putting on glasses. Hoping this will help alleviate the issue.
We want to avoid these kinds of days, but the reality is, sometimes there is just no way around it. It is a truly incredible strain on your ciliary muscle, having to hold the lens of your eye at that exact degree, for hours on end. This muscle is designed for high precision, tiny movements, and a very large range. Instead, we use it at the extreme end of its range, for significant periods of time – well beyond those it was designed for.
This is what got us into the myopia hot waters in the first place, and to whatever extent possible, we want to limit close-up time. When this isn’t possible, we have to, at least, limit the focal-lock – time the ciliary spends in a fixed close-up position.
It’s the continued focus at a short, specific distance that really is the problem.
In a ten hour day, getting outside for a half hour every few hours would be really good. Breaks after 40 minutes (focused on a screen, your eyes also stop blinking properly), and changing up the focal plane by removing your differential prescription, even putting on your full prescription once in a while … anything to get that ciliary muscle to change the specific tension.
Compare to holding a weight in an exact position. Very strenuous. If you move the weight a bit, different parts of the muscle are activated, giving the others a moment of reduced strain. It’s much easier to move the weight, than to hold it steady – same with your ciliary muscle, being forced to keep focus at an exact spot for extended periods.
These exercises and recommendations are so much more than just the degree of change they introduce. They also create awareness, and you begin to start recognizing the strain, working around it – this is not a one week, or one month project. Over time, these small changes become part of how you use your eyes, bringing gradual, ongoing, and permanent improvements to your vision.
Meanwhile, we are getting close to your first normalized prescription.
1. Check on your centimeter. How’s your maximum distance now, with some active focus, vs. where you first started?
2. Work out some focal plane changes for yourself, for the long work days. Also do a centimeter at the end of the longest days, see whether (and how much) you lose on distance on those days.
3. Consider again, natural lighting options, if you get into long days. Full spectrum UV desk light, as small of a detail as it might be, can make a difference.
Keeping up the good work, glad you have been sticking with it!