Myopia is a common refractive error which leads to nearsightedness. Essentially, this means that objects at a distance are often blurry and distorted. This condition is incredibly common and much that has to do with how we spend our time as far as looking at computer screens, reading books, and overall recreational behavior. Much of what we do today as part of our school, work, and social lives require constant strain on our eyes.
While there may be a hereditary component to it, there is actually no way to predict which children will be impacted. Still, parents don’t want their children to be impacted by an eye condition, so the more that people understand about its prevention, the better off they may be.
As mentioned, there is somewhat of a hereditary aspect to myopia. What that means is if both parents suffer from nearsightedness, then this may increase their child’s risk as well. It may also come on by the eyeball growing too quickly in childhood or starts growing again in adulthood. Unfortunately, myopia may develop faster in children simply because their eye is growing at a faster rate.
Much of the progression of it remains a mystery for researchers, but some studies indicate that focus fatigue that is brought on by looking at a computer screen or reading a book too long may play a role in the development of myopia.
One thing that has been discovered is that some of the eyeglass prescriptions that have been given to children in year’s past have actually worsened the condition. As of now, the focus is being given to the creation of new lenses that may actually slow down the progression of myopia since it is believed that a special type of lens is required for this particular condition.
Oftentimes, parents will ask what they can do to help protect their child from developing nearsightedness. One of the best things that children can do is allow their eyes to rest. This means limiting the time they spend looking at screens.
Researchers indicate that actually encouraging children to get outside can play may be the most basic solution. It is recommended that children should have at least 90 minutes of outside play per day. Children who spend more time away from screens or focused intently on books are less likely to develop myopia or at least slow its progression if they do already have it. It is suggested to only allow children up to three hours of screen time in addition to their regular school activities.
If children are using a computer, they should take frequent breaks and allow their eyes to rest for a few moments. This can be accomplished by following the rules of giving your eyes a break every 20 minutes and gazing at an object across the room for at least 20 seconds. This small break can do wonders for allowing your eyes to reset and refocus rather than being consistently strained.
Additionally, if your child shows signs of nearsightedness (such as squinting, headaches, etc.), then you should take care to ensure that they receive proper eye care. It is critical that children are diagnosed and treated as soon as possible in order to slow the progression with the appropriate glasses.
At Trinity Eye Care, we make it a priority to help each and every client with their specific needs. If you would like more information about myopia in kids or would like to take advantage of our other services offered, please reach out today to Trinity Eye Care in Plano, TX to schedule an initial consultation 972-378-0707.