Are You Using Your Phone in Bed? Find Out the Risks

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Are you using your phone in bed frequently? Be aware! You may experience an unpleasant condition like temporary vision loss.

People who use their phones in the dark while lying on one side can suffer from temporary vision loss, reveals a report published in the June 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

“When they stop reading and get up to do something else, they might suddenly lose vision in the eye they’ve been using to read their smartphone,” said Dr. Gordon Plant, an ophthalmologist from Moorfields Eye Hospital in London.

This feeling may lead to anxiety and unnecessary investigations. But, actually, it’s a short-lived optical sensation that can last for several minutes, with no risk of permanent damage, notes

What to do When You’re Using Your Phone In Bed

The research team explains the temporary condition: It’s the eye’s ability to adapt to dark conditions. “The patients are looking at their phone in the dark lying on their side. If on their left side, the left eye is occluded by the pillow and they are viewing the phone with the right eye. The left eye is adapted to the dark, and the right eye is adapted to the light.”, Gordon Plant said.

When people switch off the phone, they can’t see with the light-adapted eye in the dark. It takes several minutes to adjust to the dark. However, they can see with the dark-adapted left eye, and so they may think that they lost vision in the right eye.

The ophthalmologist thinks the effect could be caused by any device that generates a bright light, but adds that the solution is “easy—look at the phone with both eyes.” That way, both eyes will be adapted to light in the same way.

“The reason I wish to make this known is because it leads to anxiety and unnecessary investigation because the patients —and their doctors—think they have had a transient ischemic attack,” the doctor said.

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