Looking after your eyes during study
Eyesight is a sense that many take for granted. When out and about, part of a good eating experience is being able to see your waitress heading in your direction, laden with delicious meals. Or, in the same way, seeing our loved ones smile at even the smallest things can bring our hearts joy.
This is particularly important to remember when studying and using your eyes to process information. Here are a few eye-safety tips and tricks to help you out.
Screen your screen use
Your body responds to light in many more ways than you'd understand. It is the rise and fall of the sun which keeps our body's natural sleep rhythms in sync.
All your digital screens emit blue light, which can negatively impact your sleep cycle – hence why an evening of long study in front of your computer can prevent you from falling asleep easily. It suppresses our body's production of the sleep hormone melatonin. This is because our body naturally assumes that we have to stay awake during daylight hours, and responds by adapting our hormone levels.
Excessive screen use could also be the cause of restless, fragmented sleep. And, as every sleep-deprived student knows, fatigue makes us all prone to grumpiness and decreases our ability to actively engage with study material.
There are many ways you can reduce these effects of blue light. The first is to obviously limit screen use. If possible, scientists suggest two to three hours before bed should be screen-free. If not, they recommend the use of dimming red-light filters on lamps in your room.
When using your computer, adjust the light settings as the light outside changes. You could also look at downloading Flux – it's a free software that reduces the blue light emitted by your screen according to the levels of sunlight in your location. It looks too orange at first, but you'll soon get used to it!
Eat for your eyes
The food we ingest has an impact on how well our body works. Healthy diets can reduce the risks of progressive vision loss conditions. Eating a well-balanced diet will also go a long way in improving your general wellbeing – this will benefit you greatly, especially if you move into a career that can be taxing for the eyes.
You'll need a variety of foods high in antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins C and E. Some examples are:
- Green leafy vegetables
- Whole grains
Your brain will also be rejuvenated with these foods, so you're able to attend to your studies with a sharp mind.
While you're stretching your legs, stretch your eyes also! By looking off into the distance and checking out scenery, you're giving your vision a break.
Don't hesitate to seek out something colourful – it can stimulate your imagination. In fact, a study published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin journal has found that green is more than just a refreshing colour – looking at the colour green before engaging in a task can promote higher levels of creativity.
So, take a quick walk outside, revitalise your senses, and come back to your study with revived passion.
You'll find that by reducing the strain on your eyes less, you can reduce stress levels and headaches when studying. Of course, you don't want your eyes to dry out either, so have soothing eye-drops on-hand, and make sure you drink plenty of water.
If you'd like any more tips with studying, we've got an experienced team on hand to help you out.