In a time of social isolation, technology has emerged as a wonder. It has granted many useful services from the convenience of our own homes. Technology has allowed for work to continue and learning to proceed.
Through surfing the web, scrolling through social media, or watching movie marathons, technology provides endless entertainment during quarantine. Most importantly, it allows us to stay connected—to those in our communities and across the world.
As innovative and practical as these devices are, however, their emission of blue light can be very damaging to our eyes. Especially during quarantine, when time spent staring into screens has increased dramatically, caring for our eyes is essential.
In an article by The Star, Dr. Ritesh Patel, Optometrist at Toronto’s See and Be Seen Eyecare, recommends the 20-20-20 rule. For every 20 minutes of screen time, give your eyes a 20 second break by looking 20 feet away. He also advises cutting off screen time two hours before bed, adjusting device settings to reduce brightness, and looking into vision-friendly home office set-ups. Read more on the effects of screen time and methods to minimize eyesight damage by visiting the article here.
With the convenience of technology residing all around, it is common to pass the day with our eyes fixed on a device. This strain on our eyes for extended periods of time can be the cause of many negative symptoms—dry eyes, headaches, and migraines to name a few. Thus it is extremely important to take frequent breaks.
One of the best ways to give your hard-working eyes a break is to get outside and soak up the sunshine! For inspiration on what to do outside during quarantine, below are some great activities for enjoyable outdoor fun:
1. Go on a walk, run, or bike ride throughout your neighbourhood. Not only does a dose of fresh air improve your physical health, it can clear your mind and improve mental health as well. Remember to comply with COVID-19 restrictions and practice social distancing!
2. Create chalk art. Unleash your creativity by filling the sidewalk with colourful artwork or inspirational messages!
3. Take up gardening. Gardening is a hobby with loads of benefits. Not only can it improve physical and mental health, it gives you a chance to get outside, get your hands dirty, and get in touch with nature. It is an uplifting and rewarding activity that results in beautiful flowers, tasty vegetables, and fresh herbs.
Pictured above are garden-grown tomato plants, chives, mint, and pumpkin.
4. Set up an outdoor picnic. Take a break from work and schooling with lunch underneath the sun! Lay out a blanket, grab a couple of sandwiches, and enjoy the peaceful outdoors.
5. Go on a nature scavenger hunt. With spring upon us, flowers in full bloom, and wildlife coming out to enjoy the warm weather, what better way to explore the nature around you than with a scavenger hunt? Try to spot and identify as many flowers, trees, birds, and insects as you can!
Our eyes are extremely important. They work non-stop from morning to night, capturing all the sights of our daily lives. We must protect them.
Our technology screens are undoubtedly captivating, entertaining, and beneficial to our lives. However, screen-time must be balanced with frequent breaks. If you are able to during quarantine, make sure to get outside and enjoy the wonderful sights of nature!
Article Contributors: Victoria Huang, Olivia Ye