This epidemic is affecting children between the ages of five and 20, and is directly dependent on the amount of close or sustained near work that they are attempting. The reason this epidemic is happening is because of the rise of small screens, especially iPods, iPads and smart phones.
Children tend to go short sighted when they are doing a lot of close work, and particularly if their parents are also shortsighted. With the rise of hand-held devices and laptops, children are spending an exorbitant amount of time focusing on these near tasks, often not looking up at a distant object for hours at a time. Whether it be texting friends, studying or playing intense computer games, many children are locking their focus on screens for hours at a time without taking any breaks.
This amount of intense concentration and focus on a task is causing a rise in short sightedness, where the distance goes blurry but reading and close work is less stressful and easier.
How to Fight the Short Sighted Epidemic
Many eye care professionals simply increase the power of a child?s distance glasses year after year, but behavioural optometrists like myself are not happy to do this. There are some steps that you can take to fight the shortsighted epidemic, with the planned that we limit the growth of short sightedness your child, hopefully keeping them out of full time glasses for their entire life.
Firstly, place limits on the amount of close work that they do, especially on small screens. When it comes to study, Internet surfing, Facebook, texting and especially gaming, make sure that they take five minutes off every half an hour. In addition, remind them to look away from the screen and get a distant object clear at least every five minutes.
Secondly, make sure that your child is fitted bifocals rather than conventional single vision distance glasses. Bifocals have a proven track record of reducing myopia, and the key in our treatment of the condition.
Finally, download my special myopia reducing vision therapy package and start doing the right eye exercises regularly. This contains eye exercises that can be incorporated into your child?s daily routine, as well as specific exercises that you have to set time aside for
If you take the time to stop short sighted epidemic now, the long term aim is to keep your child out of glasses for distance where long into the future. This aim is possible, but you need to act early and be consistent in dealing with the condition. With a little bit of effort, you can save your child from the shortsighted epidemic.