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Computer Use Contributes to Children’s Nearsightedness

Did you know experts have noticed an increase of cases involving nearsightedness in children? They suggest it is probably due to the lack of outdoor time as children tend to play with computer games instead of going outside to play.

In a new study, researchers discovered that the prevalence of nearsightedness has doubled over the last five decades. They implied that this phenomenon has something to do with the children’s habit of not spending enough time outdoors in natural light.

As more and more kids prefer to play their video games, their eyes are more adjusted to focusing on objects at closer distances. This greatly contributes to the development of nearsightedness or myopia, Dr. Rohit Varma, the director of the University of Southern California Eye Institute, said.

“Kids are spending much more time doing indoor activities with their cell phones, iPads, computers, and so on,” Dr. Varma elaborated, adding that focusing on nearby objects and under low-light conditions contributes to nearsightedness.

Dr. K. David Epley added that family history is a huge contributing factor for nearsightedness. This vision problem is also common in people living in urban communities and industrialized areas than in rural places.

East Asian kids are more likely to be nearsighted. But coupled with vision-impairing habits, the rate of myopia could become higher.

In China, the rate of myopia is 90 percent, considerably higher from the rate of 10 percent to 20 percent prevalent 60 years ago. In the U.S., the rate is 42 percent, particularly for people aged 12 to 54.

Commenting on the disparity in the figures, the researchers rationalized that there is a notable difference in work habits between kids from China and individuals from the U.S. In China, children average 12 hours of work each day while people in the U.S. tend to clock in about nine hours.

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