Practicing healthy eye habits for the modern workplace with Cruz

March 20, 2024
Cruz Corral is a social media content creator and works full time in marketing. Juggling both roles, he finds himself spending long hours in front of a computer and phone screen, which has had an impact on his eye health. After experiencing how these symptoms affect his work and life, Cruz now has a lesson to share with his followers.
Cruz Corral poses with a dog

For Cruz Corral, screens dictate the rhythm of his work. As a full-time marketing professional and content creator, Cruz can spend up to 14 hours a day on digital devices. From working 9 to 5 on a computer to spending his evenings shooting and editing content on his phone, the hours stack up.

Cruz’s comedic social media content shares the different ways in which generations react to the various ins and outs of corporate lifestyle, dramatizing the stereotypes of each generation in the workplace. As characterized in his videos, Gen Z and millennial corporate employees may place higher value on physical and mental wellbeing at work than their more senior colleagues, leading to differing communication styles and priorities at work. (Gallup)

Amid his digital hustle, caring for his eyes started to take a back seat.

Cruz Corral “It can be hard to take breaks during the workday, especially because my downtime after work is often spent on my phone. But setting boundaries and establishing a regular practice of taking screen breaks will help protect your eyes in the long run, and can also inspire your colleagues to do the same.”

Long hours staring at screens can potentially cause serious damage to your eyes and impact your ability to comfortably view screens in the long term. “When looking at a screen for an extended period of time, your eye muscles work overtime to ensure what’s on your screen and close to your face can remain in focus,” says AOA President Dr. Ronald L. Benner. “This can lead to digital eye strain, which is a collection of eye-related symptoms that include dry eyes, headaches, neck pain, and blurred vision. When untreated, digital eye strain can lead to reduced visual abilities, even after stopping computer work.”

However, there are some healthy practices people can implement in their everyday life to prevent these symptoms from developing or worsening. Take it from Cruz – since working remotely over the last few years, he has prioritized taking frequent breaks from his work computer and practicing the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes you spend on screens, take a 20-second break to gaze at something 20 feet away. Cruz also finds time to exercise and take his dog for walks, giving himself a much-needed break from screens.

“I’m always going to be looking at a screen, and as the world continues to rely more and more on digital devices, I only see it increasing – not only for myself, but the rest of society. That’s why there is such a huge benefit in prioritizing your eye care now, even if you have 20/20 vision like me because it may not stay like that forever,” Cruz says. “Making an appointment with an AOA optometrist is the best first step you can take because they are able to examine your eyes and develop a personal plan that fits you and your schedule.”   

Cruz now makes it a priority to care for his eye health in light of his extensive exposure to digital devices and hopes his followers will do the same.

“I’ve learned a lot about taking proper care of my eye health,” shared Cruz. “It’s so important that I share this information with my followers. So many of us work on screens all day and scroll on our phones or watch TV into the evenings. By taking care of our eyes, we can reduce the risk of future health consequences, and ensure that we can keep doing what we love on screens long into the future.”

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