Doctors are noticing an increased amount of eye issues in children as a result of looking at screens all day.
Now that children are returning to school for the new term, it is a good idea to check up on their eye health as these issues could impact their vision and concentration.
Khuram Sarwar, an optician at Feel Good Contacts, recommends, “Before school starts for the autumn term, it’s important to establish a good bedtime routine that doesn’t include screen time.”
Khuram adds, “Getting enough sleep is important for staying alert during the school day, so gradually start to limit screen time. The blue light emitted from screens causes digital eye strain, headaches and hampers sleep as it tricks your body into thinking it’s still daytime keeping you awake.”
The experts at Feel Good Contacts have created a guide to help parents know what to look for to detect any eye health issues.
One of the most telling signs that your child has issues with their eyes is if they are struggling to read.
“They may read slower than usual, make numerous mistakes whilst reading the text, skip words or perhaps, jumble the order of the words while reading,” the experts state.
If your child is squinting to see, it might be time to take them to the optician to have their eyes checked.
The experts say, “They may avoid reading, especially when reading something from a distance. They may also try to see from the corners of their eyes or tilt their head to help focus on an object.”
White or greyish colour in the pupil
A white or grey spot in your child’s pupil might suggest that they have a condition, such as cataracts, and should be checked out by a doctor.
“This can sometimes be a sign of cataracts, corneal ulcer, retinoblastoma (eye cancer in children) or uveitis. This will often affect your child’s visual clarity,” the experts explain.
Watery, itchy or red eyes
These symptoms could be a sign that your child is suffering from an eye infection, which is not uncommon among children.
The experts state, “These are common symptoms of eye infections, caused by irritating substances coming into contact with the eye. You may notice that they rub their eyes frequently to relieve itchiness and irritation.”
Sensitivity to light
Sensitivity to light could be a symptom of several conditions, including epilepsy.
“This could be a sign of many conditions, including cataracts and epilepsy. They may also frequently report that they have a headache,” the eye health experts explain.
If your child is suffering from any of these symptoms, it is important to speak to a professional.