Watch Out for Screen Time Hours for Your Children During this Pandemic

Everyone knows the strain caused by gadgets and mobile phones to children’s eyes. But people tend to trade the risks for convenience. For instance, when they are stuck at home, leaving the kids to their games and YouTube shows means more time to devote to their work.

However, you should never dismiss the dangers of eyestrain. It could mean that your kids may potentially wear corrective lenses for the rest of their lives. Apart from the inconvenience, you also need to consider your budget. Browse the collection from the sites like 1001 Optical to get an idea of how much a set of prescription glasses or contact lenses cost. And remember, you need to update the prescription glasses every two years.

The National Health Survey and the Australian Bureau of Statistics have published a study, which revealed that short-sightedness (myopia) and far-sightedness (hyperopia) are the two most common conditions affecting Australian children. One in 20 kids aged 5-14 years wears lenses to correct myopia. In terms of gender, short-sightedness tends to affect girls more than boys. Meanwhile, boys are more likely to deal with long-sightedness than girls.

The Sydney Myopia Study, meanwhile, showed that about 19% of 12-year-olds use lenses for astigmatism or the blurred vision caused by myopia or hyperopia.

How Gadgets Damage Your Kids Eyes?

Smartphones, computers, and mobile gaming devices emit a high-energy blue light, which then penetrates your children’s eyes and increases the risks of developing vision problems. This condition is called Computer Vision Syndrome.

Although your kids will never complain about it—out of fear that you will take away the gadget—their eyes will feel heavy, sore, and tired. Other symptoms include nausea, headache, and dry eyes. 

What is the Ideal Screen Time for Kids?

According to the Australian Institute of Family Studies, the recommended daily screen time for kids should not exceed two hours. However, Australian kids aged 4-5 years old are already going beyond that limit. The number of hours they spend on gadgets rises to 3-4 hours on weekends. It means that they are spending a quarter of their waking hours tethered to their screens.

That’s why it’s important to teach them the 20/20/20 rule. Your kids need to take a break every 20 minutes of screen time. Once on a break, they should stare at a distance 20 feet away for 20 seconds. Above all these, wearing anti-reflective glasses like the ones you see on 1001 Optical can help reduce the glare from the screen, thus protecting your kids’ eyesight.

There are more ways to minimise the risks:

  1. Switch on the night time mode in the gadgets so as to reduce the blue light emitted from the screen.
  2. Make sure there is sufficient ambient light.
  3. Increase the text size on the screen, which would be helpful for those distance learning modules.
  4. Don’t allow them to put the screen close to their face.
  5. Add anti-glare devices that can be hooked to your computer screen.

With the prospect of online learning due to COVID-19, there is a risk of increased screen time for your kids. If you are not careful, it will result in considerable damage to their eyes. Consult your eye doctor and take them for a review once in a while. 

Author Bio: Ellen Hollington is a freelance writer who offers to ghostwrite, copywriting, and blogging services. She works closely with B2C and B2B businesses providing digital marketing content that gains social media attention and increases their search engine visibility.