Concequences of Eye Straing | The Vision Gallery Edmonton

STRAIN DRAIN: The True Consequences of Eyestrain

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Young woman suffering from eye strain at her laptop removing her eyeglasses to rub her eyes with her finger with a pained expression

We’ve all pushed ourselves to accomplish an important task– if it requires vision, like driving long distances or reading for sustained periods, our eyes have to work overtime. This can leave us with irritated eyes or a headache at worse, right? Not quite! There are many effects of eyestrain that can disrupt your life, especially when combined with other conditions such as fatigue. Read below for the Vision Gallery’s guide to avoiding eyestrain.


Eyestrain has many causes, but some are unique to our modern age. Traditionally, the most common causes of strained eyes are:

  • Drying out due to moving air (ie: fan, HVAC system, etc.);
  • General fatigue, stress or overexertion;
  • Incorrect prescription lenses;
  • Lighting is too dim;
  • Lighting is too bright (glare);
  • Extended visual focus (ie: driving, reading, sports, etc.).

However, the biggest culprits for eyestrain nowadays are digital displays and LED lights. Computers, tablets, smartphones, TVs– you name it!  Almost all devices emit blue light, which can limit the quality and length of sleep if you are overexposed. Additionally, the small text and constant usage of these devices only worsen the problem.


You may be experiencing eyestrain if:

  • Eyelids feel heavy or you are unable to keep your eyes open;
  • You are struggling to concentrate or focus;
  • Light is distracting or off-putting;
  • You wince at changes in lighting;
  • Neck, shoulders or back are sore;
  • You have a headache;
  • Vision is doubled or blurred;
  • Eyes water or dry out;
  • Eyes feel scratchy, achy or tired;
  • Burning or stinging sensation in or around your eyes.


There are little to no serious side effects of eyestrain, nor does it lead to many long-term complications. Still, the condition is annoying and can cause further problems when struggling with fatigue, stress or other factors. The best treatment is adjusting your life to avoid eyestrain in the future. Regular breaks for your eyes, blue light filters and– most importantly– shutting down your screens well before bedtime are all surefire ways to help prevent eyestrain.

Questions? Concerns? Contact or visit the experts at Vision Gallery today!

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Update on Face Masks February 15, 2022

As per the Alberta College of Optometrists, “face masks are still required for all optometrists, staff, patients and other visitors to the clinic regardless of age”. 

The recent Premier’s announcement lifting the mask requirement for children 12 and under pertains to other locations such as schools, restaurants and gyms.  However, the City of Edmonton mask bylaw still stands.  Furthermore, optometry clinics are part of essential community health services. As such, the mask requirement in clinic has not changed. 

Patients with an official mask exemption must contact the clinic to arrange a safe time and space for their visit.

We will keep this page updated should Public Health Measures change in the future. 

 If you have any questions or concerns regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to reach out to Dr. Julie Dien-Fong via email at: