You don’t need this blog to tell you how important your child’s eyes are. That being said, how much do you know about the different ways you can help protect them?
- Wear Sunglasses.
Sun damage to your child’s eyes now can easily turn into cataracts (when the usually-clear crystalline lens becomes cloudy), macular degeneration (breaking down of the macula, which essentially causes “holes” in vision) cancer, and other undesirable complications when they get older. Luckily, there’s a very simple way to lessen those risks: sunglasses!
Sunglasses for your child don’t need to be expensive, but they really should wear them whenever they are out in the sunshine. You can easily find a decent pair for under $10 at many stores; just be sure that they are designed to block out both UVA and UVB rays.
If your child spends a great deal of time around sand, water, or snow, you may want to invest in a pair of polarized sunglasses, which will help lessen the glare coming off of those reflective surfaces. If they are involved in sports, make sure that any sunglass frames and lenses they use are impact-resistant to avoid potential eye injuries.
P.S. Don’t forget about a sunglass case!
- Bluelight Filters.
Bluelight can come from many different sources. The sun gives off some of those rays, as well as many of our electronics with screens, such as televisions, smartphones, tablets, etc. While some of that light can be beneficial during the day, it can become problematic at night, as it tends to disrupt circadian rhythms and, as a result, sleep patterns.
If your child already wears glasses, their lenses can be made to include a bluelight filter. If not, there are also special glasses without prescription that can be purchased for the sole purpose of filtering some of those rays. Either of these options could come in handy if your child engages in screen time before bed.
Finally, some computers, phones, and tablets now have a bluelight filter setting that is often referred to as “Night Mode.” This can be programmed to turn on at a certain time every night to help reduce eye strain and sleeping problems.
- Proper light while working/reading
Unfortunately, there are many different ways that your child’s eyes can become strained. Ultraviolet rays from the sun and bluelight from gadgets are definitely on the list, but problems can also arise when there is not enough light.
Pay attention to where your child likes to read or do homework; are they working very close to the page or squinting? If so, something as simple as a reading light or a tableside lamp will likely be enough to ease the strain and fatigue.
- Annual eye exams.
Did you know that you and your child should be having your eyes checked at least once per year?
Eye exams are not only for children who need vision correction. Just like annual medical checkups, they are put in place to make sure that your child’s eyes are healthy and working properly. If it turns out that they do require glasses (or, in some cases, contacts), it is also important to keep that yearly appointment in order to make sure that the prescription is updated!
As a parent, we know that your child’s happiness is at the top of your priorities. A child with healthy and functioning eyes is much more likely to succeed in every aspect of their life than a child who constantly struggles with eye strain, fatigue, or pain.
Keep them healthy to keep them happy!