The Covid-19 pandemic has brought with it new ways of doing things. To keep the infection rates at a minimum, many people have been forced to stay indoors. School-going children have had to get used to the new reality of online classes to remain safe. This translates to a lot of screen time which is not ideal but education has to go on.
Your child’s vision is still developing and exposure to blue light from screens could lead to them having to deal with eye problems for the rest of their lives. Most children can now operate tablets, smartphones, and computers and this has contributed to the rise in poor sight.
Research shows that short-sightedness in children has doubled in the last 50 years in the UK and children are developing this problem at a younger age. Therefore, your child is at a real risk of having poor eyesight. If you’re wondering how you can keep this from happening, read on to discover ways to take care of your child’s eyes.
How Does Blue Light Affect Eye Health?
Blue light is a high-energy light that’s part of the rays that make up visible light. It’s produced by the sun and digital devices like smartphones, computers, tablets, laptops, LED lights, and TVs. Due to its high energy levels, overexposure to blue light, especially from digital devices is harmful to your child’s eyes.
Blue light overexposure can lead to eye conditions such as.
Computer Vision Syndrome/Digital Eye Strain
This is an eye condition where the eyes feel dry, sore, and get red because of prolonged use of screens. It’s also characterized by blurry vision, headaches, back, neck, and shoulder pains. Once it happens, continuing to use screens becomes a struggle so it will affect your child’s ability to learn effectively.
When your child is constantly being exposed to blue light from screens, they have a higher risk of developing cataracts much earlier in life.
Cataracts cause the patient to develop an opaque lens so seeing properly becomes a problem. Overexposure to blue light increases the production of free radicals in the lens which destroy them and cause cataracts.
This is an age-related eye condition but it can occur at a young age because of too much screen time. It affects the retina and causes the breakdown of its cells so the patient develops blurry vision. If not treated on time, it could deteriorate to blindness.
How to Protect Your Child’s Vision
If you have a young child, they may not understand what the fuss is with blue light so you have to help them implement the protective measures. They include.
Minimize Screen Time
Since you can’t compromise on your children’s class time, you can minimize the time they spend on their gadgets for entertainment. You can limit it to only a few minutes or only during the weekends.
To reduce the amount of blue light that your child is exposed to, make sure they keep a distance of 18 to 24 inches from the screens of tablets or computers. Additionally, make sure the top of the screen is at their eye level to avoid eye strain, back, and neck pains.
Your child may get so engrossed on a gadget that they don’t blink causing their eyes to experience dryness and eye strain. Remind and teach them to blink as often as possible so that their eyes remain hydrated.
The 20-20-20 rule is a good method you can teach your child to help ease their eye muscles and prevent eye strain. The rule requires that they look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes.
Make sure your child doesn’t remain on the screen during breaks between classes. Have them walk around for a short time or be involved in an activity that doesn’t require a screen.
Adjust Screen Brightness
If the brightness of the screen is so high that it’s causing a glare on your child’s eyes or too low that it’s making them squint, adjust it. Match the screen’s brightness as close as possible to the room lighting to prevent eye strain.
Eye exercise will help your child’s eyes refocus and ease the discomfort from prolonged screen time. They include eye rolls, fluttering eyelids repeatedly, and shifting focus between objects.
Foods like carrots, capsicums, spinach, avocadoes, eggs, nuts, and broccoli have nutrients that will improve the health of your child’s vision. Fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids that will improve the strength of your child’s eye muscles.
Blue Light Filters
You can get the gadgets that your children use for online classes fitted with blue light screen protectors. They block blue light from reaching their eyes and causing harm.
You can also get blue-light blocking glasses specifically made to be used by children. They also block blue light from reaching your children’s eyes.
Protecting a child’s health is any parent’s priority. Ocushield will help protect the health of your child’s vision and take the burden off you. They offer the best medically-rated blue light screen protectors and glasses in the market so make your order today!