Digital technology has created greater demand and stress on the eyes of patients and can result in symptoms such as eyestrain, blurred vision and difficulty in maintaining concentration. Now, more than ever, there is a need to prescribe lenses to relieve specific issues associated with prolonged use of digital devices.
Technology has become part of our everyday environment. In Australia we have become very attached to our smartphones and digital devices.
The latest Digital Australia: State of the Nation report from professional services firm Ernst & Young has found Australians spend on average 10 hours and 24 minutes engaging with their internet-connected devices every day. Digital devices have evolved into a necessity.
The side effect of this reliance on and use of digital technology is a greater demand and stress on the visual system, which can result in symptoms such as eyestrain, blurred vision and difficulty in maintaining concentration. This in turn affects productivity. The additional exposure to Blue UV light emitted by digital devices adds further to eye health and eye strain.
Digital anti fatigue lenses… provide the advantage of greater wide field of vision and a prescription progression from intermediate to near in the lower part of the lens
With these changes to technology and our environment, there is a greater need to prescribe lenses to relieve specific issues associated with prolonged use of digital devices. This new category of lenses can be added to the range of solutions we recommend and prescribe to relieve and prevent digital visual fatigue.
Why Not Reading Glasses?
Providing reading glasses as a solution is inadequate as it does not optimise the focus and relaxation of the accommodation of the visual system at different distances.
Digital anti fatigue lenses, on the other hand, are designed to provide the advantage of greater wide field of vision and a prescription progression from intermediate to near in the lower part of the lens which optimises vision. When combined with the benefit of blue light filters, this results in reduced eye strain and less visual fatigue.
Just as a multifocal is a superior correction over a bifocal, digital lenses need to be thought of as the lens of choice over reading lenses and are ideally suited to people aged 20 to 45.
Lead the Way
As a profession we need to lead and educate our patients and provide a solution for their specific needs. We need to move away from the mentality of one size fits all i.e. one pair of glasses for all tasks or all occasions.
An effective way to introduce this form of correction when talking to our patients is to introduce these lenses as the latest in lens design technology, which, when combined with the new beneficial Blue filtering coatings, become the new, most effective way to relieve eye strain and optimise their vision. This being most important since they are spending so much time using digital devices in their daily lives.
So next time when you’re about to recommend a single vision reading lens, break the habit and think of a digital anti fatigue lenses as your lens of choice.
Jim Papas is an optometrist with extensive experience in contact lenses. He’s also an expert in retail, business strategy and brand development. Jim has won multiple awards for customer service and commercial innovation, including the 2015 Australian Retail Innovator of the Year award.