Eye strain is a common problem today. It can happen for a number of reasons. Some common causes are lack of sleep, staring at digital devices for long stretches of time, reading in low light for a long time without taking a break, allergies, incorrect vision prescription, exposure to bright light and some kind of eye problem.
Eye strain can cause a lot of discomfort. Some of the symptoms are redness or irritation, difficulty focusing, dry or watery eyes, blurred or double vision, increased sensitivity to light, headaches and pain in the neck, shoulders or back.
Usually the symptoms do not occur in the morning, but appear when you do something causing the eyes to strain to focus.
Though there are many over-the-counter eye drops and medicines that can offer help, there are also many natural ways to alleviate eye strain.
Here are the top 10 ways to reduce eye strain.
1. Eye Massage
To reduce eye strain, gently massage your eyelids daily. It will improve blood circulation to the eyes and also relax the muscles around your eyes. At the same time, it will stimulate the tear glands, which will help prevent dry eyes.
- Use your fingers to gently massage your eyelids and muscles above the eyebrows for about 10 to 20 seconds.
- Gently massage your lower eyelid against the lower bone for about 10 to 20 seconds.
- Massage the temple and upper cheek bones, also.
- Do this 1 or 2 times daily.
Note: You can use a few drops of olive oil or an eye cream for a smooth massage.
Palming is great to relax strained eyes, especially while reading or spending too much time in front of your desktop, laptop or television screen. The main goal of palming is to create a restful state for your eyes so they do not become tired.
- Sit up straight in a comfortable position.
- Warm your hands by rubbing them together rapidly.
- Close your eyes and place your warm palms over them, without applying pressure on the eyelids.
- Relax and enjoy the darkness for about 30 seconds.
- Slowly open your eyes and look around.
- Repeat the process 3 to 5 times at a sitting.
- Follow this technique frequently throughout the day.
Sunning is another beneficial technique to relax strained and tired eyes. The vital life energies of the sun are good for your eyes. Sunning also will help your body produce vitamin D, which is important for your overall health. To avoid tanning, do your sunning between 8a.m. and 10a.m.
- Stand in a sunny place in the early morning.
- Close your eyes and allow the sunlight to fall on your eyelids.
- Feel the warmth on your eyes and slowly move your eyes up and down, right to left and clockwise and counter-clockwise.
- Repeat this process for a total of 5 minutes.
- Follow it with palming.
- Do this once daily.
Note: During sunning, don’t wear contact lens or glasses. Also, it is essential to do palming after sunning to derive the maximum benefit.
4. Eye Exercises
Regular eye exercises can alleviate eye strain. Exercise will improve blood circulation to the eyes, make the eye muscles more flexible, and improve focus and concentration.
- Hold a pen or pencil at an arm’s length and focus on it. Slowly bring the object closer to your eyes, as long as you can focus on it clearly. Then move the object farther from your vision. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
- Also, roll your eyes in clockwise and counter-clockwise directions for a few seconds. Take a break and blink your eyes. Repeat 4 or 5 times consecutively. Do this exercise every few hours.
Perform these eye exercises daily to prevent eye strain and enjoy good eyesight.
5. Cold Water
Cold water can also be very effective in relieving mild eye strain. It can improve blood circulation, relax tired muscles around your eyes, and reduce eye swelling and puffiness.
- Splash some cold water on your face and closed eyes whenever your eyes feel strained or tired. It will have a quick relaxing impact on your eyes.
- For a more concentrated remedy, dip a soft washcloth in cold water and wring out the extra moisture. Place the cold washcloth on your closed eyelids for 1 minute. Repeat as needed.
- If you have puffiness along with strained eyes, use a cold compress. Wrap a few ice cubes in a clean cloth. Place it on your closed eyelids. The puffiness will decrease after 5 to 10 minutes of application.
6. Warm Compress
A warm compress is another way to reduce eye strain. It will relax the muscles around your eyes, reduce strain and soothe dry eyes. It is also effective for reducing the pain swelling of an eye sty.
- Dip a soft cloth in warm water and wring out the excess moisture.
- Lie down comfortably, close your eyes and place the warm towel over your eyelids.
- Relax and breathe slowly for 1 minute.
- Change the washcloth and repeat the process 3 or 4 times.
- Follow this treatment 1 or 2 times daily.