Eye Strain Headache Relief

Think you have an eye strain headache? Do you suffer with headaches whenever you try to read a novel or a textbook or any fine print? Do you find it strenuous for your eyes to watch TV? Do your eyes feel tired and sore after prolonged computer work? Looking for some eye strain headache relief? Today you will learn all about eyestrain from an optometrist and I will even give you my top 10 tips to help eye strain relief by yourself.


If you answered YES to any of the above questions, you could be suffering with an eyestrain headache. Most of us cause these types of headaches ourselves by constantly over exposing our eyes to television, computer screens and video games.

What is Eye Strain?

Eyestrain is a common form of eye discomfort that occurs when the eyes tire after you have been doing a particular visual task for prolonged periods, such as spending several hours in front of the computer.

Symptoms of eye strain include headaches, painful or uncomfortable eyes and vision problems. These eye strain symptoms are normally not present when you wake up but normally come on by visual tasks like reading. Most often, what you need is a new pair of glasses or contact lenses, or maybe the muscles that align the eyes are strained and just need a rest.

What Causes Eyestrain?

Focusing your eyes for prolonged periods on a fixed object, especially between 40cm and 80cm. Eyes are strained more by close viewing than distance viewing.

Poor lighting. Near work under poor lighting conditions causes the eyes to focus under difficult conditions.

Glare, either direct or reflected, makes it difficult to see. Direct glare would be glare directly into the eyes form bright overhead lighting or sunlight through a window. Reflected glare would be from your computer screen. As your eyes strain, facial and eye muscles tighten.

Contrast is the difference between the brightness of the object being viewed and its immediate environment. Excessive contrast will lead to eyestrain.

Vision problems. With blurred vision, you will get a headache in no time! You may be straining to see because you need corrective spectacles or you may need to update your current spectacle or contact lens prescription. This just means that you are creating too much strain on your eyes without giving the proper rest or the required nourishment the delicate tissues and blood vessels around your eyes.

Symptoms of Eye Strain

  • Headaches
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Pain in the eye
  • Red, watery eyes
  • Dry eyes that feel scratchy or uncomfortable
  • Heaviness of the eyelids or forehead
  • Back aches and neck aches
  • Spasm of the muscles surrounding the eyes
  • Twitching of the eyelid

How is Eye Strain Treated?

Having eye strain does not mean that you should stop using the computer or reading or watching television. You should identify the cause of the eyestrain and correct it. This would involve:

  • Having a comprehensive eye examination to see if you require spectacles and to rule out any eye disease or eye disorder as well as to make sure that your current spectacle or contact lens prescription is correct.
  • Assessing your work environment. A professional trained in ergonomics may be helpful in arranging your workstation to reduce eye strain. You can get your free desk ergonomics copy of “SOS My Desk” from Pineslopes Chiropractic Clinic. Just email the chiropractors and ask for SOS My Desk.

10 Tips To Help Relieve Eye Strain:

So here it is an optometrists Top 10 Tips to help eye strain relief:

  1. Ensure that your computer screen and reading material is not too close to your eyes.
  2. Take a 2 minute break from your computer after every hour. Do this by looking into the distance or by simply closing your eyes. Slowly blinking the eyes a number of times may also help give the eyes a gentle massage.
  3. Focusing your eyes between two different focus distances can tire the eyes. Always try to keep your reading material at the same distance as your computer screen.
  4. Work stations and lighting should be arranged to avoid direct and reflected glare. Place the computer where there is no glare from windows or light and keep screens clean and dust free. Using a glare filter on your computer screen also helps.
  5. The computer monitor should be slightly below eye level. This will allow you to look downward at the screen and allow you to blink more frequently and thus prevent dry eye.
  6. Wear sunglasses that reduce glare and offer 100% UV protection while driving or working outside. This reduces strain on the eyes and prevents squinting which may tire eye and facial muscles.
  7. When reading, knitting or drawing, hold your material about 40cm from your eyes. Also, use adequate soft light (a 60 watt bulb).
  8. Room lighting should never be as bright as your computer screen. Find a way to darken the area around the computer screen.
  9. While watching TV, the room lighting should be 50% dimmer than the screen. Do not watch in total darkness though as this makes the contrast in light too great. Also sit at a reasonable distance away from the TV. Too close viewing distances can also cause eyestrain.
  10. For those of you enjoy doing yoga, there are some asanas and exercises specifically addressed to your eyes. This is beneficial to you from all aspects.

Hope this helps you get some eye strain headache relief soon. If any problems or questions please call us at Pineslopes Optometrists on 011 465 4028/9 or via our optometry contact page.

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