The Dry Eye Zone

Rebecca's Blog


Newsblurb: Dry eyes in Ireland

First we had a big wave of dry eye publicity in the US where it seemed every slow news day had some sort of minimally educational article about dry eye and how to treat it, or at least how to line the pockets of a pharmaceutical company. Now we're seeing articles now and then in Europe and Asia on a regular basis. Here's one example:

Treat your eyes - take a screen break

eatment in eye clinics as a result of working on computers for long stretches.

Researchers at the University of Ulster showed one of the most common complaints is dry eye, which can affect large numbers of people but particularly those who work at computers indoors, in air-conditioned environments.

Johnny Moore, consultant ophthalmic surgeon, advises people to pay attention to the positioning of the computer and also to check out the humidity within the workplace or office.

"It is important that the user's seat and PC screen are adjusted to the correct height," he says. Other points to note include:

- Make the screen a bit duller as it makes it easier to read.

- People blink at least half as much as they normally do when looking at computer screen. The advice is to remember to blink and every now and then close your eyes for a few seconds.

- Every 10 minutes fix on an object 10 feet away for 10 seconds.

- Instead of reading long reams of text on the computer it may be better to print it off rather than having to concentrate for a long time on the screen.

- When you're working at your computer screen, stop every hour and take a two-minute break.

During this time, lie back in your chair and close your eyes. This will help to moisten and re-lubricate your eyes so they feel less dry and irritated.

Other advice is keep well hydrated in the modern, air-conditioned environment.

Researchers at the University of Ulster are currently undertaking a phase three clinical trial for a new drug for dry-eye treatment. Ulster is one of 30 centres across Europe involved in the research.

I wonder if Dr. Moore has any suggestions when his patients confirm that the humidity in their office has dropped into single digits....