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5 Simple Steps to Protect Your Child From Digital Eye Strain

Are you worried about your child spending too much time on the computer or phone during this period of social distancing and COVID-19? Here are some tips from our Creekside optometrists on how to protect your kids eyes from digital eye strain. 


While it’s almost impossible to keep your children away from computer or phone screens in this day and age, you must make sure to minimize their exposure as much as possible. In fact, optometrists often recommend that kids over the age of 3 should spend no more than 2 hours a day looking at a screen, while children younger than 3 should have no screen exposure at all.  

Why? Excessive use of computers, tablets, and smartphones can have a significant impact on your little one’s vision, including: 

  • Development of computer vision syndrome 
  • Digital eye strain, which is associated with sore eyes and difficulty focusing
  • Increased risk of macular degeneration or retinal damage in the future
  • Higher risk of progressive myopia 
     

Our Creekside Optometrists Are Committed to Your Family’s Eye Health During COVID-19 

At Blink Eyewear, we are more committed than ever to protecting your vision and eye health. While our Calgary clinics will remain closed during this time, our Creekside location will be kept open for emergency urgent eyecare by appointment only. 

We are also offering telemedicine services and we can arrange for a telephone or video consultation to answer any questions you may have regarding protecting your family’s vision.  

Want to know more?  

URGENT EYE CARE DURING COVID-19 AT OUR CALGARY CLINIC 
 

5 Tips To Help Your Child Avoid Digital Eye Strain During COVID-19 

These days, parents know that depriving kids of digital devices is not a good solution. Digital learning is an inevitable trend and while you may be able to limit screen time for preschoolers, it becomes more difficult as your child gets older. 

Unfortunately, digital learning and excessive screen time often comes hand-in-hand with digital eye fatigue and strained eye muscles and some of the symptoms include: 

  • Constant eye rubbing
  • Squinting
  • Holding books very close
  • Unwilling to read or do detailed tasks
  • Headaches
  • Neck and shoulder pains
  • ​Difficulty focusing 

The good news? There are some steps you can take to help your child avoid digital eye strain while still growing up tech-savvy: 

  1. Remind them to take frequent breaks. Optometrists often recommend the 20/20/20 rule for kids who are on the computer. This means that you must focus on an object at least 20 feet away, for 20 seconds, once every 20 minutes. Also remind your child to get up for at least 10 minutes every hour.

  2. Enforce a healthy viewing distance. Make sure your child holds the tablet and other mobile devices at least 40 cm away from their eyes. Computer monitors should be at a distance of at least 1.5 times the diagonal measurement of the display.

  3. Make sure the lighting is adequate in their room. Good lighting is very important for your child’s vision. Whether they work in a study or their bedroom, make sure that the general lighting in the room is adequate for the tasks they are working on. What does this mean? The brightness of the screens should match the study environment. 

  4. Create a bed-time for devices. Too much screen time can interfere with natural sleep cycles, so make sure to turn off all devices at least one hour before your children go to bed. Have a designated place where you can charge all the devices at night as this is a great way to avoid temptation. 

  5. Model good habits in front of your children. Whatever rules you set for your children, for example limiting them to one hour of screen time in the evenings, try to adhere to the same guidelines yourself. 
     

Have an Eye Emergency? Got Questions About Your Eye Health? We Are Just a Phone Call Away 

At Blink Eyewear, we are as committed as ever to your eye health! While our Calgary clinics are temporarily closed, our eye doctors are still providing emergency eye care services at our Creekside location by appointment only. 

We are also available for virtual consultations over a video call or the telephone to answer any concerns or questions you might have about your eye health. 

If you have an eye emergency, please email creek@blinkeyewear.ca, or call us at 403-516-2292 and we will get back to you as soon as possible. After a phone or video consultation, we will come up with a treatment plan.

 


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