Kids Use Technology More than Parents Think

It’s no secret that parents and children don’t always see eye to eye.

AOA Digital Devices Infographic

While moms and dads usually have the upper hand in these situations, recent studies conducted by the American Optometric Association (AOA) show that kids are increasingly pulling the wool over their parents’ eyes when it comes to the amount of time they spend using electronic devices.

One AOA study found that 83% of kids between the ages of 10 and 17 use an electronic device for more than three hours a day. A separate study, however, found that only 40% of parents with kids in that age range believe their children are using electronic devices for a least three hours a day.

That’s quite a disparity between perception and reality. But, in the defense of parents, increased access to devices at home and in the classroom means screen time can add up quickly.

This is unaccounted-for screen time is concerning to parents and eye doctors because it means a greater likelihood that warning signs for Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) could get overlooked.

We’ve mentioned before how important it is to be aware of CVS and the steps you can take to help prevent it. But now that our children are just as exposed to devices and screens as adults are, it’s imperative that we monitor everyone’s time in front of a monitor (or phone or tablet or TV).

Follow these quick tips to help prevent and relieve Computer Vision Syndrome.

The 20/20/20 rule.
Take a 20-second screen break every 20 minutes and focus on something 20 feet away.

Take a break.
Every hour, take an additional 5-10 minute break to get up and look around.

Limit daily screen time.
Set a threshold for the amount of time spent in front of the TV, computer and other devices.

Position desks and computers away from windows and light sources, and keep monitors clean so there is not added eye strain.

Make it bigger.
Size up fonts to make texts bigger and easier to read.

Don’t stare.
Blink frequently to keep your eyes wet and minimize the chances of developing dry eye.

Face forward.
With your feet flat on the floor, the screen should be 20-24 inches from your face at a slight downward angle.

Wear your eyewear.
One of the main cause of CVS is uncorrected vision problems, so if you have you glasses or contacts… wear them.

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