Playing outside can prevent short-sightedness
Lateef Iqbal, store director at Specsavers Camberley, Alton and Farnham is encouraging parents to look after their children's sight this winter. His advice for local parents in the area is:
Daylight and eyesight
Playing outside is good for children’s minds and bodies but it's little known that daylight is also good for children’s eyes. When the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, it can be tempting to keep playtime indoors. But research has shown that sunlight can play an important role in preventing short-sightedness in children. Catch some sun rays for about 40 minutes each day.
Top eyecare tips for children
As well as playing outside, here are some other tips for parents:
- Play, rest, repeat! Natural sunlight is good for the children as explained earlier but also use this outdoor time to see monitor your child’s vision regularly. Point to something in the distance - can they see it clearly? Listen to their language – do they use words like ‘blurry’ or ‘unclear’ to explain objects nearby?
- Eyes front of class. It is common for a teacher to pick up sight issues. Maybe a child cannot see the blackboard clearly or is experiencing difficulty with their reading. A lack of concentration or interest in reading could be a sign too.
- Headaches or tired eyes. When a child has good language skills, they can often articulate eyesight issues and symptoms. They may describe impaired vision or complain of headaches or tired eyes.
- In the genes. If there is family history of short-sightedness or other eye conditions, it is sensible to have a child’s sight examined from the age of three upwards and frequently after.
Here to help
The team at Specsavers Camberley, Farnham and Alton is always on-hand to help answer any concerns about a child’s eye health and eyecare. The eye examination is very child friendly and is made fun for children too. If children do need glasses, there's a big choice of glasses, including a new Disney range and under-16s get a free NHS eye test. All glasses in Specsavers’ kids’ £64 and teens’ £85 ranges are free with under-16s’ NHS funding. Specs wearers can also choose a second pair from the £64 or £85 range, for free.