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Too Much Time with Technology?

POSTED ON January 11, 2012

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How much time do your kids spend using electronic media every day? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting screen time for children to two hours per day, but recent studies are finding that children ages 8-18 are spending more than 7.5 hours a day consuming electronic media including computers, smartphones, e-readers and tablets. Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) includes various vision-related problems that can occur from computer use. Symptoms include blurry vision, difficulty focusing, dry and irritated eyes, headaches, and even neck and back pain. So what ...

How much time do your kids spend using electronic media every day?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting screen time for children to two hours per day, but recent studies are finding that children ages 8-18 are spending more than 7.5 hours a day consuming electronic media including computers, smartphones, e-readers and tablets.

Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) includes various vision-related problems that can occur from computer use. Symptoms include blurry vision, difficulty focusing, dry and irritated eyes, headaches, and even neck and back pain.

So what can you do to help protect your kids from symptoms of CVS? Vision Service Plan (VSP®) has several suggestions:

  • Watch the time. To avoid fatigue and short-term CVS symptoms, your Indiana eye doctor recommend consistent breaks. Try the 20/20/20 rule: Every 20 minutes, stop and look at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Also, set time limits for the maximum amount of “screen time.”
  • Be aware of working distance. The closer the eyes are to the object they’re looking at, the harder the eyes have to work. Use the Harmon Distance (the distance between the elbow and first knuckle) as a guide.
  • Get regular eye exams. Make sure you child gets an annual comprehensive eye exam, not just a school screening. Children should have their first eye exam at six months of age, then at three years of age, before starting kindergarten, and every year after that.

Did you know that outdoor play helps prevent the development of nearsightedness? Encourage your kids to get at least two hours of outdoor play per day…and don’t forget the sunglasses!

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