As parents, we often prioritise our children's physical and mental well-being. But there's one crucial aspect of their health that sometimes slips under the radar – their eyesight. With National Eye Health Week just around the corner, it's the perfect time to focus on keeping our little ones' eyes healthy. In this article, we'll explore some key tips to ensure your children's eyesight stays their healthiest for a lifetime.
Earlier this year, Myopia Focus conducted a survey aimed at gauging parental awareness regarding myopia and the available treatment options for managing it. The findings of the survey revealed a noteworthy issue: parents seem to face a considerable challenge in grasping the potential risks associated with myopia, which could ultimately lead to vision problems.
The survey of 200 UK parents found that 1 in 4 parents stated that they have “rarely or never” taken their children for an eye examination.
Furthermore, a staggering 77% of the respondents expressed their lack of awareness concerning the elevated risk of developing eye-related health issues in adulthood linked to high myopia.
What steps can you encourage to keep your child's eyes healthy?
Screen Time Management: In today's digital age, children are spending more time than ever in front of screens. Excessive screen time may lead to digital eye strain and may contribute to the development of myopia. Encourage regular breaks from screens and limit screen time according to age-appropriate guidelines.
Outdoor Playtime: Studies have shown that spending time outdoors can help reduce the risk of myopia onset in children. Natural light and outdoor activities promote healthier eye development. Make it a habit to include outdoor play in your child's daily routine .
Balanced Diet: Nutrition plays a pivotal role in maintaining good eye health. Foods rich in vitamins A, C, and E, as well as antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, which can be found in Dark-green vegetables such as kale, spinach, and broccoli, can help protect against eye conditions.
Regular Eye Checkups: Annual eye checkups are crucial for detecting and addressing any vision issues early on. Even if your child doesn't show any signs of vision problems, routine checkups can catch potential issues before they worsen. Use our tool to find a myopia management specialist near you.
Educate and Raise Awareness: Use National Eye Health Week as an opportunity to educate your children about the importance of eye health. Teach them about eye-friendly habits like not rubbing their eyes, maintaining proper distance from screens with more regular breaks from near work, and using protective eyewear when necessary.
In a world where screens are ubiquitous, and the demands on our children's eyes are greater than ever, taking proactive steps to safeguard their vision is essential. National Eye Health Week serves as a reminder to prioritise our children's eye health, from outdoor playtime to balanced nutrition and regular checkups.
If you're a parent whose child has been diagnosed with myopia or if they are struggling with their distance vision, we hope you found MyopiaFocus helpful. Please join our community or sign our petition to get the government and NHS to recognise myopia as an ocular disease/severe ocular condition and fund myopia management for children.