Now that more kids have access to computers, TVs, smartphones, and tablets on a daily basis, digital screen time among children is increasing. Too much screen time can lead to eye strain, also known as computer vision syndrome (CVS), which has a range of unpleasant symptoms including headaches, fatigue, blurred vision, dry or irritated eyes, back or neck pain, and poor concentration. Luckily, there are several ways you can prevent digital eye strain occurring without cutting off the source completely. Take a look at these tips.
1. Set Limits for Screen Time
Designate an amount of time your kids may use electronic devices each day, according to their ages. Kids under two should not have any screen time, those up to nine year can have 30 minutes, those aged 10 to 13 can have one hour, and 14- to 15-year-olds should have no more than two hours, recommends VSP.
2. Sit at the Right Distance from the Device
Screens should be directly in front of your child’s face, slightly below eye level, advises USA Today. Keep computer screens vertical, not tilted, and ensure that your kids are not placing their faces too close to the monitor or handheld device.
3. Use Adequate Lighting
Keep bright overhead lights to a minimum, instead opting for desk lamps pointed away from your child’s face. In addition, position the computer screen in a way that avoids reflection and glare from windows and light sources, suggests She Knows.
4. Take Breaks and Go Outside
Daily exercise and outdoor activities not only keep kids fit and healthy; such play can also prevent nearsightedness, says She Knows. Make sure your kids’ eyes are protected outdoors, too, by providing them with a pair of quality sunglasses that shield their eyes from 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays.
For more information about choosing the right sunglasses, check out our checklist for sunglass safety and protection. You can also purchase a pair of sunglasses for your child directly on the Real Kids website.