Five Tips to Keep Your Children’s Eyes Healthy
Five Tips to Keep Your Children’s Eyes Healthy
Did you know that about 60% of children with learning disabilities have an undetected problem with their vision? This makes sense when you consider nearly 80% of the information taught in the average classroom is presented visually. It can be difficult for a child with a vision issue to keep up with lessons.
August is Children’s Eye Health & Safety Awareness Month, a time to reflect on children’s eyesight and preventing eye injuries and vision loss. Experts estimate one out of every four children has a problem with their vision that could become permanent if left untreated. Parents need to make their children’s eye health a priority. As an advocate for proactive patients of all ages, Pegalis Law Group, LLC has provided tips below for parents to keep their children’s eyes healthy.
1. Annual Eye Exams Are Important for Children (Just Like Adults)
We cannot stress enough the importance of taking your kids to an eye doctor for annual eye exams to detect and treat vision problems early. Many parents take their children to the eye doctor at six months and then again at age three if no issues are detected. Once children are of school age, annual eye exams are recommended, as vision problems may affect their learning and development.
It’s essential to stimulate hand-eye coordination in babies and toddlers. Simple games like peek-a-boo, patty cake, or catch can reveal issues with hand-eye coordination that could indicate a vision problem. Be on the lookout for other vision warning signs among children, which may include frequent eye rubbing, squinting, head tilting, excessive tearing, sensitivity to light, wandering eyes, or a tendency to sit too close to the TV or hold a book too close to their face.
2. Ensure Your Child’s Toys Are Age-Appropriate to Avoid Injuries
Please don’t give your children age-inappropriate toys with sharp edges or protruding parts that could cause severe eye injury. Teach your children not to run with sharp objects, such as scissors that could cause serious injury if they trip and fall. Don’t let children handle fireworks, especially without adult supervision, as they could cause blindness and other vision issues.
3. Protect Your Child’s Eyes With Eyewear (Goggles, Sunglasses, Etc.)
You can prevent many pediatric eye injuries with the appropriate eyewear. If your child plays a sport or enjoys swimming, consider protective goggles to keep their eyes safe from harm. Consider protective eyewear that meets American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards. Sunglasses with UV protection are essential to protecting children’s eyes from the sun’s harmful rays when outdoors on sunny (and even partially sunny) days. Teach your children to never look directly at the sun.
4. Limit Your Child’s Use of Digital Devices – Try the 20-20-20 Rule
Try to limit your child’s daily time spent on digital devices, including televisions, computers, tablets, mobile phones, and gaming systems. While watching television or using digital devices isn’t necessarily dangerous to eye health, it can cause conditions like digital eye strain. Over time, continuous viewing of such devices could cause blurred vision, headaches, dry or irritated eyes, or issues with focusing. We suggest implementing the 20-20-20 rule: look up from your screen every 20 minutes and try to focus on something at least 20 feet away from you for at least 20 seconds. This can help combat digital eye strain.
5. Ensure Your Child Gets Enough Sleep and Eats a Balanced Diet
No matter your age, getting enough sleep at night helps prevent fatigue and eye strain. As a parent, you must instill good habits in your children by putting them to bed at a decent time and ensuring they eat a well-balanced diet. Eating healthy foods full of vitamins, nutrients, and omega-3 fatty acids can help keep your children’s eyes healthy and prevent infections. Encourage your children to eat:
- Fresh fruits like oranges, strawberries, and mangos
- Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and broccoli
- Fish like tuna, salmon, or halibut
- Non-meat proteins like eggs and nuts
Dedicated to Public Safety and Awareness for Nearly 50 Years
Pegalis Law Group, LLC is a New York-based personal injury and medical malpractice law firm. For nearly 50 years, we’ve made it our mission to create proactive patients and educate the public about various health and safety concerns. Please visit our website and follow us on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to receive additional insights to remain proactive about your family’s healthcare.