Thursday, 9 September 2010

Eyestrain - Tell Me About It!

I was sent an email asking for advice on eyestrain. I am so not the person to ask. Yesterday I started work at 9am and worked through until 1.30am and I felt as though I had eyes on stalks by the time I went to bed. My computer screen is set to shut down every forty minutes and the idea is that I get up and do something different for at least ten minutes. But there is so much work on the new book that I cheat - I can't help myself - I just press the button and keep going. Eyestrain is not so much a problem for me as dry eyes and sometimes styes - it seems I don't blink enough. So, at night and in the morning I bathe my eyes with hot water and that helps a great deal. I don't use eye-drops. My mother who was a professional cloth burler and mender  used to have problems with dry eyes and styes just the same. So, my advice is to blink - and to relax your eyes - gaze into the distance every half hour or so. But, this is not the advice given in the 17th century when it was:

Sitting at worke cast not aside your looke,
They profit small that haue a gazing minde:
Keepe cleane your Samples, sleepe not as you sit.....

Maybe you have some helpful advice to offer us?


  1. I'm an optometrist ad a stitcher so I an give you my advice. Keep blinking if you can but if you have dry eyes tear drops are a good help. They mimic the tears composition and work very well. Plus they do not contain preservatives and can be used any time you need. Staring at ar distance in a well lit room works as well because it ease the strain on the ciliary muscles. Happy stitching! Rosanna

  2. Sometimes it helps my eyes more to just close them for a minute and hold my usually cool/cold fingers on my eyelids, in addition to looking across the room. It's almost like they need a rest from focusing on anything, near or far. My worst eyestrain is at work, with overhead florescents.

  3. Yes the teardrops are great, I get them from my GP and they work, especially when I am in a large store with fluorescents.

  4. i know i keep the artificial eye drop companies in business. i have used them for over 30 years due to one eye not being able to blink. yet i find that i am having more trouble with my wrist from typing and of course stitching. like you i can go for hours without a break and oh do i pay for it. umm maybe we should write a book on the things to do and not when a stitch addict.oh to suffer for art!!