You’ve heard us before — 80 percent of what students learn in a classroom is processed visually — so back-to-school time is an important one for healthy eyes. For students of any age, here are three things to consider when school begins again.
Digital device use. Parents may have spent much of the summer trying to get their children off their devices, but digital learning has become a reality in many schools. Unfortunately there seems to be a gap in how long parents believe their kids use digital devices each day and what kids report themselves. According to a recent study from the American Optometric Association, 83 percent of children say they use their devices three hours or more a day, while only 40 percent of parents believe their children are on their devices that long.
One possible reason is that parents may not be taking classroom use of devices into account. If you aren’t aware of how much time your students spend on devices, ask their teachers. Older students who spend more time at the computer may need glasses to help reduce strain, much in the same way adults who use computers on the job do.
Participation in sports. Back-to-school time means that more kids will be hitting the fields and courts. The top five sports for the most eye injuries include two of Chicago’s favorites — football and basketball. Unfortunately awareness of sports eye injuries is still low among sports programs. If you have a student-athlete — or participate yourself — click here for more information on eye protection for sports.
Study habits. Some research supports the idea that the close work of reading and other study activities can have an impact on eyesight. Other studies have shown that more time spent outdoors decreases the incidence and degree of myopia.
While more research is necessary for conclusive recommendations, it’s a good idea for parents to be conscious of their children’s study habits. Make sure the student in your life is supported with the right eyewear and make time for breaks away from the books by being active outdoors whenever possible.
If eyewear is on your back-to-school list this year, we have many fashionable and functional options. We recently added a new collection of Tom Ford eyewear to our practice and are now offering 30% off all Gucci frames through the end of the year.
As always, if you have any questions about your eyes, please get in touch.