Eye strain occurs when your eyes are practically overworked -- similar to aching muscles after a long workout. With eye strain, however, the repercussions are a bit more serious, as you can end up doing long-term damage if you keep having it.
The symptoms of strained eyes can vary. Some people experience blurry vision, a pounding headache, or have difficulty focusing. Others get very dry or watery eyes, sore, itchy, or even like they're burning.
If you experience any or some of these, experts recommend looking away from your screen and blink if you haven't for a while. You can also stretch your neck to ease muscle tension in an uncomfortable position.
Remember to take breaks even if it's short. You can't just stare at your computer or phone screen all day and expect your body will be okay. Take whatever excuse you can to get up and move, like making a cup of coffee or fixing yourself a snack.
It's easy to take a break if you're working, but what if the cause of your eye strain is from playing video games or binge-watching Netflix shows? That can be a problem.
If this is your problem, try and control yourself from heading straight to your TV or phone. COVID-19 got us all stuck in our homes, so you basically have a whole day of screen time. Make some time to do other things before you cement yourself on the couch.
If all else fails and you feel like your digital eye strain is killing you, try a warm compress to relax your eye muscles and relieve dry eyes. Use a soft and clean cloth dipped in warm water and find a comfy place to lie down. Place the warm cloth over closed eyelids and relax. Take deep breaths while doing so. You can do this at least three times a day.
You can also relieve strained eyes by applying cool aloe vera gel on the area around your eyes and leave it on for at least 10 minutes. Aloe vera has a lot of healing properties and it can soothe tired eyes and help improve blood circulation around the eye area. You can also use the gel as a lotion to massage your eyelids and the muscle above the eyebrows.
Note that these are simple remedies and are not meant to cure extensive eye damage. Take frequent breaks every 45 minutes or so and do not starve yourself of sleep. Take good care of your eyes!