The past six months, when our children studied remotely, did not have the best effect on their health. According to experts, the nervous system, musculoskeletal system and, of course, eyesight have suffered the most in schoolchildren. How to protect a child's eyes?
Our expert - ophthalmologist, head of the ophthalmology department of the Federal State Budgetary Institution NMITSO FMBA of Russia, full member of the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (ESCRS), member of the Russian Society of Ophthalmologists, Candidate of Medical Sciences Nika Takhchidi...
Studying at a distance, in contrast to regular full-time education, involves the highest possible visual load. It is clear that such a need did not arise from a good life. Nevertheless, now the eyesight of our children needs rehabilitation.
Not teaching, but torment
When teaching, which is conducted on a computer and a tablet (or even worse - on a smartphone), the student looks either at the screen or in a notebook (textbook), which does not change the nature of the visual load. And working at close range puts the maximum stress on the vision. Unlike a regular lesson, in which the types of visual loads change regularly (the child looks either in a notebook, then at a blackboard or a teacher), due to which his intraocular muscles have the ability to automatically relax, with distance, these muscles are constantly tense. Lessons on the Internet lead to tension of the ciliary muscle of the eye and spasm of accommodation, and can also cause the progression of myopia. In addition, when working at the computer, the child blinks less often, which leads to the gradual development of dry eye syndrome.
Hands off your smartphone!
Hopefully, remote learning won't come back. But it is also important not to forget to limit the time that the child spends with the computer after school. The norm in grades 1-4 is 15 minutes a day, in grades 5-7 - 20 minutes, in grades 8-11 - 30 minutes a day. But, if this limit is exceeded, it is important to take breaks. It is also important to maintain the correct arm-length distance between the screen and the eyes. It is for this reason that the most harmful of gadgets is a smartphone, which, unfortunately, modern children do not let go of. Since it has the smallest screen and, accordingly, gives the smallest image, the load on the intraocular muscles is the greatest and the eye strain is higher. Also, the child needs more concentration of attention, which also leads to rapid eye fatigue and the nervous system.
Both charging and discharging
To avoid the development of vision problems in a child, you must:
Rest his eyes more often... Defusing the eyes is the most effective way to improve vision. It helps to relax and strengthen the intraocular muscles and may even delay the progression of myopia. Walking in the air and any physical activity is also useful, because at this time the child looks into the distance (which for the eyes is relaxation), in addition, the blood circulation in the eyes improves.
Develop the correct mode of operation... After any visual load at close range, it is necessary to take a break of 5-10 minutes and look into the distance, thereby giving the eyes a rest.
Improve lighting... A moderately bright light is needed, falling on the table from the left for right-handers and from the right for left-handers.
Work on your posture... To ensure the correct position of the student's body, the table and chair should be appropriate for the child's height, and the distance between the eyes and the book should be 30–35 cm.
Feed properly... With an unbalanced diet, vision problems also arise: the supply of the eye muscles with the necessary substances deteriorates, muscle fatigue and impaired fiber contractility develop. If the retina does not receive the necessary vitamins and metabolites, weak nerve impulses are formed in it, which makes it difficult to create visual images by the cerebral cortex. Therefore, it is important to maximize in the child's diet foods high in vitamins A, group B: B1, B2, B6, B12 and vitamin C. Give children more fresh vegetables and fruits, fish rich in omega-3, and high-quality dairy products.
Give eye supplements only if prescribed (approved) by a doctor... And understand that these drugs do not cure visual impairment. Sometimes it becomes necessary to additionally use drugs or dietary supplements that help nourish the eye from the inside. But we must understand that vitamins cannot cure myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism, since these disorders are associated with the irregular shape of the eyeball and the features of the refractive media of the eye. However, they can provide better eye nutrition and, in adults, help slow down age-related changes in the retina. The vitamin complex is selected by the doctor for each patient individually, taking into account his age and health characteristics.
Do gymnastics for the eyes... It is needed to prevent fatigue of the intraocular muscles and can prevent the appearance of vision problems. But in order to have an effect, it must be done regularly.
Eliminate bad habits... For example, it is not recommended to read in the dark, especially on a gadget, lying down and holding the phone close to your face, because in this position there is tension in the muscles of the neck and head and, accordingly, the blood supply to the eyes worsens. Smoking and alcohol in children should not be discussed at all. This is absolutely unacceptable and hurts not only the eyes.
Don't put off wearing glasses... Many are mistaken, believing that the later they put on the glasses, the greater the percentage of vision they will be able to save. This myth often becomes a brake on the restoration of vision in a child and interferes with the normal development of his visual system. The formation of the eye and its structures occurs before the age of 12-14. And in case of visual impairments in a child, spectacle correction allows the eye to develop normally and makes it possible to "teach" the retina to see. Also, wearing glasses prevents the development of certain eye pathologies, such as amblyopia and strabismus, and can correct conditions such as myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism, allowing the muscular system of the eyes to work without extreme stress and strain.
TOP-5 exercises for sight
Thanks to them, it is possible to strain and relax the ciliary muscles, training them, and to strengthen the accommodative apparatus of the eye:
- movement of the eyes up and down,
- right left,
- "Point on glass" (draw a point on the glass and look at it, then into the distance in turn).