Last Updated on
The growing craze of video games is seeing many children falling prey to its ill effects. But gaming is fine as long as it isn’t overdone, and this is where you step in. Find out how to reduce body ache and strain on the eyes due to video games.
Gone are the days when children’s favourite pastime used to be playing with their friends outdoors in the sunshine. Nowadays, children are enamoured by video games. However, as stimulating and challenging as they are, they come with several downsides that, as a parent, you need to know.
The Truth About How Video Games Affect Your Child’s Eyesight
Playing video games for long hours can rob your child of all the good things that physical play and the outdoors have to offer. It also causes concentration issues that can affect their performance in school.
1. Eye Strain
You need to stay focused on the screen if you want to win a particular game. The competitiveness of gaming means that players can’t help but strive to win, which can take anywhere from minutes to hours. This means a lot of screen time and strain on the eyes due to video games.
2. Computer Vision Syndrome
Children who spend long hours playing video games can also suffer from computer vision syndrome. Frequent headaches, itching and irritation of the eyes, blurred vision and dryness are a few symptoms. If your child complains about any of these, take him to an ophthalmologist immediately.
3. General Aches and Pains
Apart from vision problems, too much video gaming can cause pain in the shoulders and neck. Sitting hunched for minutes at a stretch with muscles bunched up leaves no room for relaxation.
Protecting Your Child When Gaming
1. Restrict Play Time
The only way to make sure that video games don’t ruin your child’s eyesight is by restricting the time spent playing. Put down strict rules for duration, which shouldn’t exceed more than an hour a day. Use video games as a treat for finishing homework and chores.
2. Position Him Properly
The way your child sits while playing games is important. Position him about 8 to 10 feet away from the TV screen. Too close and his eyes will take a beating. If he’s playing on a computer, the monitor should be at eye level.
3. Let him Rest His Eyes Frequently
Eye specialists recommend that people who spend long hours staring at a TV or computer screen should rest their eyes every 20 to 30 minutes. This holds true for your child as well. Have him focus his eyes at far off objects for about 20 seconds at intervals.
4. Reduce Screen Glare
The glare from a TV or computer screen can be very straining to the eyes. Don’t dim the lights so low that the light from the screen becomes too bright. Properly illuminate the room so that your child doesn’t feel any discomfort when playing.
Let your child enjoy his childhood to the fullest. Aside from allowing some screen time, encourage him to step out of the house and play with friends. Video games and eye problems don’t need to go hand-in-hand, not when you monitor his lifestyle. It’s all about balance!