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World Eyesight Day: Work from home, online classes taking toll on eyes | Dehradun News

Dehradun: As the outbreak of coronavirus is limiting people to remain within the confines of homes, their daily on-screen time has increased dramatically, putting great stress on eyes. Ophthalmologists, who are witnessing a surge in the number of patients with eye-related ailments, say that long hours of screen time, often without break, due to ‘work from home’ and ‘online classes’ is badly affecting the eyesight of people, especially of students and teachers.
Talking to TOI on the occasion of World Eyesight day, observed on the second Thursday in the month of October, Dr Gaurav Luthra from Drishti Eye Institute says that people are facing issues with eyes but are scared to come to hospitals because of the fear of contracting Covid-19.
“A lot of people who have serious eye ailments like cataract, glaucoma, among others, need regular care and yet they are postponing treatment due to the pandemic. This lets the situation become grave. Consequently, a lot of emergency cases are coming now as long delays in check-ups are creating complications in already existing diseases. Sometimes, patients come with irreversible damages. For instance, we are seeing patients with cataracts which are ready to burst. Thus, I urge people to go for regular eye check-ups,” he added.
Dr Vinod Arora from Navjyoti Eye Hospital claimed that among the average 40 patients who he sees in the OPD daily, 50% are students, who are taking online classes, and the rest are mostly professional working from home due to the pandemic.
“The profile of people who used to come to my clinics has changed in the past few months as most of those coming in the OPDs are youngsters who are working from home, students who are attending online class, and teachers who are conducting online sessions. Most cases these days are related to computer vision syndrome,” he said.
Eye doctors say that the emergency cases related to eye ailments have also increased during the pandemic. They add that such issues have especially increased among the elderlies as they have been avoiding eye check-ups due to the pandemic and only go to doctors when the situation becomes grave.
Talking about the ways to reduce the adverse effects on the eyes due to excess screen time, Dr Chirag Bahuguna, eye surgeon at Gandhi Shatabdi Hospital, said that people should follow the 20-20 rule and intentional blinking. “The 20-20 rule means while working on screen for long hours, one should take a break after every 20 minutes and look at any object 20 feet away for 20 seconds. People should also keep blinking as it helps eyes a lot. So, we should intentionally blink in order to relax the eyes,” he added.

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