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All Posts in Category: General Info

Eye Fatigue

What Is Eye Fatigue?
Your eyes might get tired quickly if you stare for long periods at a computer, smartphone or game console. The eye doctor might call this computer vision syndrome or digital eye strain. It affects most people who use one. Some estimates say computer-related eye symptoms may be responsible for up to 10 million eye doctor visits a year. The problem is expected to grow as more people use smartphones and other handheld digital devices. You hold this kind of device closer to your eyes than a book or newspaper. That forces your eyes to work harder than usual as they strain to focus on small words.

Digital devices may also be linked to eye fatigue because you tend to blink less often when looking at a computer screen. People usually blink about 18 times a minute which naturally refreshes the eyes. But studies suggest that people only blink about half as often while looking at a computer or other digital device, and can result in dry, tired, itchy and burning eyes.

What Causes It?

Anything that requires intense eye use can cause fatigue. Some of the most common are:

  • Reading 
  • Writing
  • Driving

If you look at a bright light or spend time in a place that’s too dim, it can also tire your peepers.

What are the Symptoms?

Be on the lookout for:

  • Sore or irritated eyes
  • Trouble focusing
  • Dry or watery eyes
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Pain in the neck, shoulders or back

These symptoms can lower your productivity. If you stay awake long hours working, you can make the problem worse. Sleep refreshes your eye with essential nutrients. Lack of sleep may lead to repeated eye irritation.

How Can You Prevent Eye Fatigue?
Make some simple changes!

Your work habits:

  • Try the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look at something about 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  • Post a note that says “Blink” on your computer as a reminder.
  • Take regular breaks from computer work.

Your eye-care routine:

  • Apply a washcloth soaked in warm water to tired, dry eyes (keep your eyes closed).
  • Use artificial tears to refresh your eyes when they feel dry.
  • To help prevent dry eyes while indoors, use an air cleaner to filter dust and a humidifier to add moisture to the air.

If you have eye fatigue or pain, see an eye doctor to make sure a broader medical condition isn’t to blame.

If the problem doesn’t go away, make an appointment for a full eye exam. The doctor can make sure your symptoms aren’t linked to a problem like an eye muscle imbalance. He can also tell if your glasses or contact lens prescription is up-to-date and suitable for computer use.

If you are interested in vision screening or have questions, contact our vision center today!

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Are You Ready for Flu Season?

In the United States, flu season occurs in the fall and winter. While influenza viruses circulate year-round, most of the time flu activity peaks between December and February, but activity can last as late as May. The overall health impact (i.e., infections, hospitalizations, and deaths) of a flu season varies from season to season.

Healthy People Need the Flu Vaccine: Influenza (flu) is a contagious disease which can lead to serious illness, including pneumonia. Even healthy people can get sick enough to miss work or school for a significant amount of time or even be hospitalized.

Recommendation: An annual flu vaccine is recommended for everyone 6 months of age and older. Pregnant women, young children, older people, and people with certain chronic medical conditions like asthma, diabetes and heart disease are at increased risk of serious flu-related complications, so getting a yearly flu vaccine is especially important for them.

Facts:

  • Pediatric Deaths—A total of 101 flu-associated deaths in children occurring during the 2016-2017 season have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In past seasons, between 80% and 85% of flu-associated pediatric deaths have occurred in children who had not gotten a flu vaccine that season.
  • Hospitalizations and Pneumonia—During the 2015-2016 flu season, the CDC estimated that 310,000 people were hospitalized for flu-related illness. Pneumonia consistently accounts for the overwhelming majority of the combined pneumonia and influenza deaths. In 2013, 53,282 people died from pneumonia and 3,550 people died from influenza (American Lung Association November 2015).
  • Is the Flu Vaccine Safe? The flu vaccine is safe, does not cause the flu, and can protect the ones you love! If you are allergic to eggs, the recommendations have been changed so you may now receive the flu vaccine. A flu vaccine is not recommended for people with a life-threatening egg allergy.

Where can you receive the flu vaccine? Your local Family Health Care Pharmacy, Medical Office or Child and Adolescent Health Center (CAHC) will give flu vaccinations—simply walk in and ask for the flu vaccination.

When is the best time to receive the flu vaccine? The best advice is to receive your flu vaccine now so you are protected before the flu season peaks.

Payment for flu vaccine? Your insurance company will be billed for the vaccination or you may pay out of pocket.

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America’s Health Centers: An Enduring Legacy, Value for Today and Tomorrow

 

In 2015, America’s Health Centers celebrated 50 years of success in expanding access to quality and affordable primary and preventive healthcare services to millions of uninsured and medically underserved people nationwide. Our strong and enduring health center mission is a testament to the important past, present and future role of health centers in the nation’s healthcare system. Health centers began as part of the nation’s War on Poverty. Today, they have grown into the largest and most successful primary care system in the country.

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