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Recognising and Addressing Signs of Digital Eye Strain

by Speckles Info 22 Feb 2024
Recognising and Addressing Signs of Digital Eye Strain

In today's digital age, screens are an inevitable part of our children's daily lives. From computers and tablets to smartphones and video games, technology offers endless opportunities for learning and entertainment. However, excessive screen time can take a toll on our children's eyes, leading to a condition known as digital eye strain.

Understanding Digital Eye Strain

Also referred to as computer vision syndrome, this condition occurs when the eyes are overworked and fatigued from prolonged screen use. Symptoms may include eye discomfort, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, and neck or shoulder pain.

As parents, it's crucial to be mindful of the amount of time our children spend in front of screens. Balancing screen time with time spent outdoors is also essential for maintaining healthy vision, as exposure to natural light helps regulate the growth of the eyes and can help prevent the development of Myopia, or nearsightedness.

Addressing Digital Eye Strain

Fortunately, there are several steps parents can take to help alleviate digital eye strain in their kids:

  1. Encourage Breaks: Remind your child to take frequent breaks from screens. The 30-30-30 rule is a helpful guideline – every 30 minutes, look away from the screen at something 30 feet (9m) away for at least 30 seconds. A timer can help kids stick to this!

  2. Adjust Screen Settings: Ensure that screens are set to appropriate brightness and contrast levels throughout the day. On most devices, you can set up night mode, which will reduce the screen's brightness and blue light automatically at the times you specify. This is a simple way to avoid both sleep disruption and eye strain. Dimming the lights in the room can also reduce glare and strain on the eyes. 

  3. Promote Proper Posture: Encourage your child to maintain good posture while using screens. Ensure that the screen is at eye level and that they are sitting at a comfortable distance from it.

  4. Limit Screen Time: Set reasonable limits on your child's screen time, especially before bedtime and create screen-free zones in the house, such as bedrooms and meal areas. Consider a family movie or board game night where the whole gang switches off.

  5. Schedule Regular Eye Exams: Schedule regular eye exams for your child, even if they don't exhibit any symptoms of eye strain. An eye care professional can detect any underlying vision issues and provide recommendations for treatment or management. You can learn about when you should get your child's eye tested here.

At Speckles, we understand the importance of protecting our children's eyes in today's digital world. By recognising the signs of digital eye strain and taking proactive steps to address them, we can help ensure that our children's eyes stay healthy and strong for years to come.

For more tips and resources on children's eye health, visit our eyeHUB. Together, let's empower our children to thrive in the digital age while safeguarding their precious vision.

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