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Can Digital Eye Strain Cause Headaches And Migraines?

Can Digital Eye Strain Cause Headaches And Migraines?

The simple answer is yes, digital eye strain can cause headaches and migraines. However, it is important to know that digital eye strain does not always cause these and that migraines and headaches can also develop due to other triggers. There may also be several stimuli occurring at once that can trigger headaches and migraines, and the addition of digital eye strain may contribute to the risk of these occurring. Headaches and migraines caused by or contributed to by digital eye strain affects people of all ages and it is becoming increasingly common as screens become a part of our everyday life from a young age. Here are some of the ways digital eye strain could be causing your headaches or migraines


Digital Eye Strain Causes Of Headaches And Migraines

Looking at a computer screen itself may not be enough to trigger a migraine, but digital eye strain tends to cause several symptoms that can lead to both headaches and migraines.

Muscle Fatigue
As you stare at your computer, the muscles in and around your eyes will get increasingly tired. To see at varying distances, your eyes need to focus and when you look at only one distance for a long time, your eye muscles will become fatigued. Forehead muscles will also get tired if you tend to furrow your brow while using your computer or phone. Once a person prone to migraines develops a headache from eye and head muscle fatigue, they are at an increased risk of developing a migraine.

Bright Lights
Some people find that bright lights trigger their headaches or migraines. Staring at a screen all day is essentially looking into direct light and it can cause people with light sensitivities to quickly develop headaches or migraines. When your computer's brightness is too high or the lighting of the room is too low, it can make the computer appear incredibly bright and this can lead to the onset of a migraine.

Back And Neck Pain
This is included as a part of digital eye strain because many people have poor posture while using their devices. It’s common to slouch while looking at a computer or phone, and if you work online, you could be sitting in this slouched position for extended periods of time each day. This can lead to neck pain, upper back pain, and shoulder pain. These are largely spinal issues, which tend to directly affect the head. When your neck and back muscles are sore or if you have a pinched nerve as a result of poor posture, this can cause headaches and migraines.

This is one of the biggest triggers for people who get migraines or regular headaches. Although we spend a lot of time using technology for fun, whether that’s reading articles, playing games, or watching TV shows, we also use technology for work. If a person is staring at a screen all day for their job or for other stressful online activities such as job applications, school work, banking, or more, this compounds stress. Having the other aspects of digital eye strain working against you while also undergoing stressful situations can very easily trigger a migraine.

Address Digital Eye Strain With An Optometrist

If you are suffering from regular headaches or migraines, it may be partially caused by your vision. To determine if digital eye strain or eye strain, in general, is triggering your headache or migraine, speak to an optometrist. Your optometrist will give you suggestions for how to reduce digital eye strain and they can recommend eyeglasses with glare-resistant and blue light-blocking lenses to help ease everyday screen use. If you think you suffer from digital eye strain, contact Market Mall Optometry at 1-403-286-4884 or fill out the online contact form to speak to a Calgary optometrist about your symptoms.



Q: How can an eye exam help with my eye strain?
A: During a comprehensive eye exam, you will have the opportunity to discuss any eye or vision problems with your doctor. Talking to a professional allows you to receive reliable advice on how to effectively treat your eye strains and reduce your discomfort. Mention headaches and migraines to your optometrist as well.

Q: Does a blue light blocking filter on my glasses mean the lenses will be a different colour?
A: No, blue light blocking glasses are not coloured and will not change the colours of what you see.

Q: Are tension headaches related to digital eye strain?
A: Yes, they can be. Tension headaches create a feeling of pressure behind the eyes and sensitivity to light. These headaches are often caused when scalp and neck muscles tense, which can commonly occur due to screen usage.

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