In today’s day and age when mobiles and laptops have taken over our lives in a big way, it is difficult to keep our children away from the screen as they are bound to do what we parents do. The problem of poor distance vision in children is increasing by leaps and bounds – who would know better than a practising ophthalmologist such as myself? Children are getting glasses at ages as less as 3, not to mention other problems like squint and eyestrain, headaches, poor social skills, irritable behaviour, increased aggression – the list goes on. We as parents need to make sure that we keep our children safe from such problems. Few measures that we can take are,
- Spend quality time with your children specifically in outdoor play.
- Get a regular eye checkup done.
- Do not give your little one the smartphone as a pacifier.
- Instead of screens, get your child some story books to inculcate the love for reading.
- Take your child to places like the zoo, the garden, fun fair, the beach and on picnics as frequently as possible.
- Play make-believe games with your child so as to boost the child’s imagination.
- Invite your child’s friends or the neighbourhood kids for regular kiddie treats and some supervised playtime.
- Do activities like puzzles, drawing and painting, telling stories, arts and crafts, etc. with your child and encourage the child at every step.
- Do not underestimate what your child understands – speak with them and try to explain things. Do not brush off any queries that they may have.
These are a few of the things that we as parents can do for our children so that they do not become enslaved to screens.
Children are known to do as they see. So the first step begins by the parents going offline and spending quality time with their children, doing things that are enjoyed by our children.
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