Mar 1, 2019


Announcer: The Health Minute, produced by University of Utah Health.

Interviewer: It's kind of hard to believe, but that headache, neck ache, or even that backache that you get at work could be caused by your eyes. Ophthalmologist, Dr. Brian Zaugg, from the Moran Eye Center, how could that be?

Dr. Zaugg: A lot of what we do at work now is staring at computer screens. A couple of things are going on. Your eyes aren't blinking very much, so the surface is drying out. And when we're staring at computer screens, our eyes can get fatigued, and some of that fatigue will make us change our posture and affect our neck and cause headaches.

Interviewer: And what can I do about that?

Dr. Zaugg: A lot of things are trying to minimize the amount of time that you're staring at the screen. There's a good rule of thumb called a 20-20-20 rule. What that is telling you is that every 20 minutes, you should look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This will reduce the strain on your eyes, and a lot of times reduce some of those other symptoms that you're having of headache and backache.

Announcer: To find out more about this and other health and wellness topics, visit

Sign Up for Weekly Health Updates

Weekly emails of the latest news from The Scope Radio.

For Patients