With the increased usage of digital devices in both adults and children, ODs should be actively searching for dry eye in their practices and screen all patients. ODs are able to do this with the tools already available to them.
The days when computer use was restricted to office work are long past. Modern computer use has extended to the classroom, home, and for most all activities. Excessive computer use has led to an increase in health-related problems in video display terminal (VDT) users, particularly in students and younger age groups. Foremost of concern for optometrists is digitally-related dry eye disease (DED).
I am sure ODs are seeing more dry eye in their offices, reaching veritable epidemic proportions, and the patients suffering from dry eye disease are growing ever younger. So let’s discuss dry eye in this cohort. Most of what you will read you have likely already seen. I want to emphasize the prevalence of dry eye and why all ODs should be actively searching for dry eye in their practices.
Rise of digital device use
Since the advent of the internet, there has been an almost viral expansion of accessibility to it. Consider the percentage of global population with internet access:1
16 percent in 2005
30 percent in 2010
51 percent in 2017
58.8 percent in 2019
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