The world of television viewing has changed dramatically in the last few decades. We have gone from limited viewing options to a scenario in which the choices seem endless. The latest fad for Americans is binge-watching. Binge-watching involves finding a show and overindulging the senses by watching entire seasons in a sitting. If you have partaken of this then you know how good and bad it can be for you all at once. The good part is being able to become engrossed in a show and follow the story line from beginning to end in a single sitting (perhaps as much as six hours at a time or more).
The bad and ugly aspect of this latest habit is the effect it can have on your eyes. Sitting for hours and focusing on a screen can cause eye fatigue and muscle strain. Sit and stare at the television or, worse, the tiny screen of your phone and the outcome can be headaches, blurry vision, and dry eyes. The last is the result of failing to blink as often when you are focused on a screen.
Unfortunately, many people will self-diagnose the problems as simply being tired. But, all too often the real issue is you have put an enormous strain on your eyes and vision. Frankly, it is unhealthy but the reality is people’s viewing habits are not going to change and may only get worse in the coming years. That is because technology continues to insert itself into our lives from all directions and most require viewing to absorb it.
Most times this blog is designed to present an issue and its resolution. I am sorry to say that the only true way to avoid the eye and other health hazards associated with binge-watching is to stop binge-watching. This hardly seems likely now that regular outlets of programming have mushroomed and more and more businesses are getting into the business of developing shows aimed at keeping consumers tied to their screens for as long as possible.
My advice? Make a lifestyle change and turn off the tube and phone. Get out and use your vision to see the world around you. You will be better for it.
If you have any questions about binge-watching and its negative consequences for your vision please do not hesitate to contact Sea Island Optometry. We are experts on all aspects of eyecare and eye health.