A #GenY eye saver

November 6, 2017

I was born in 1986 which means I’m a member of the Generation Y clan. We are also known as Millennials. I was born right before the founding of Google and I am unsurprisingly shaped by technology.

The phrase Generation Y was first used in a 1993 Ad Age article, while Millennials was coined by sociologists Neil Howe and William Strauss. If you like me are part of #TeamGenY, (then, well, no wonder you’re reading my blog first of all) you too are comfortable sharing snippets or vast segments of your life online via selfies and all kinds of social media uploads. Go you! I got your back. (Insert fist pump emoji.)

There are many pros to being #TeamGenY but like everything in life, con’s too. To kick off with the good stuff, I owe GenY my job. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without social media. The opportunities I get – to travel the world, learn, research and trial pioneering health and fitness innovations, take part in incredible challenges, (more on this front will be announced very soon) find inspiration at my fingertips at the click of a few buttons and hopefully, motivate others to lead the best life possible via promoting health, fitness and wellness – I feel incredibly fortunate and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

But for the cons? Well, I’m very often looking at a digital screen. It’s safe to say that I use my MAC, iPhone and camera for a large chunk of my day. This has many effects. For one, the light from these devices is “short-wavelength-enriched,” meaning it has a higher concentration of blue light than natural light—and blue light affects levels of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin more than any other wavelength. (Insert geek emoji.. Maybe three.)  So this can interfere with my sleep. For this reason, I try not to look at any screen for too long an hour before I go to bed. If I watch a movie or work late before bed then nine times out of ten I’m tossing and turning for a good hour before the Z’s set in.

But my main concern when looking at digital screens for many hours each day is Eye strain, which in the past has resulted in eye irritation, dryness, fatigue and blurred vision. I wear contact lenses and sometimes they can feel very hard and dry in my eyes and they can become sore when I’m feeling run down, short on sleep and/or I’ve been staring at digital screens all day. Unsurprisingly, I’m not the only one suffering. Such problems are increasingly common, according to a new report. “Some of us are using these things [devices] for up to nine hours a day. Your eye muscles have to focus at that near range and that can be fatiguing,” Dr. Christopher Starr, an associate professor of ophthalmology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, told CBS “This Morning.” This lead me be totes #GenY and jump on google (of course) and research what contact lenses I could wear that could help combat the digital-dry-goggle-eye-GenY-syndrome.

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I get my eyes tested regularly and I wanted to get the best contact lenses that would give me the maximum comfort and support when I’m gawping at digital screens for hours on end. I came across CooperVision and its new Biofinity Energys contact lenses which have been designed specifically for those who work all day in front of digital screens. Bingo. The website lists a whole host of benefits which these lenses provide and they’re perfect for #TeamGenY. The lenses boast a Digital Zone Optics lens design which CooperVision claims helps with eye tiredness caused by focusing on close-up digital devices. The CooperVision website also informs that these lenses help you see clearly and go from on-screen to off-screen with less effort. And that’s not all. There’s also the Aquaform Technology which attracts and binds water throughout the lens material to retain moisture and this hydration helps your eyes feel less dry. The lenses are billed “highly breathable” meaning your eye gets exposed to more oxygen than many other contact lenses. This is important to maintain eye health and keep them looking clear and white. The lenses can be used for a month before replacements are needed. Lots of good stuff here I thought. Time to eat the pudding…

I went to have my eyes tested at CooperVision and the optician fitted me with a pair of the Biofinity Energys contact lenses. They felt comfortable and I forgot I had them in my eyes which is always a good sign. I gave them two weeks before delivering my verdict. During this time I spent many hours in front of digital screens. Did my eyes ever feel dry? The truth is yes they did. I did have to use eye drops on two occasions. Because, no matter how great the contact lens technology may be humans are still humans, (we still haven’t quite reached #GenRobot –yet…) and sometimes we get run down and because we’re not superhuman we don’t produce the hydration our eyes may need 24/7 364 days of the year and there’s no getting around this. Not yet at least. No contact lens can prevent our body’s deficiencies and inefficiencies but it can help. I also like knowing that the Biofinity Energys contact lenses are the best for helping keep my eyes healthy no matter what I’m doing. And on average I really forget I’m wearing the Biofinity Energys lenses. You can’t beat that for comfort!

So thank you CooperVision for having my and the rest of #TeamGenY’s eyes. We heart you.

(And of course the featured image for this post had to be a selfie. Right?)

Poppy Cross in partnership with CooperVision.

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