Effective learning is dependent on good vision. This is why it is very important for parents to keep their children’s eyes healthy by teaching them good eye care habits.
“Parents are strongly advised to establish their children’s proper eye care habits early on to reduce the risk of developing problems,” says pediatric optometrist and orthoptist Dr. Gualberto Dato.
Parents can start by making sure their children have a healthy, balanced diet.
Children should also learn to protect their eyes. For instance, wearing UV-protected glasses will help prevent eye conditions caused by prolonged exposure to UV rays, like cataracts; protective eyewear with impact-re sistant lenses can be worn when playing sports to protect eyes from injuries.
To lessen the probability of developing nearsightedness, Dr. Dato urges parents to make sure that their children rest their eyes, especially when doing near work like reading or using handheld devices. “Children should take vision breaks by closing their eyes for approximately 20 seconds for every 20 minutes of near work to relax their eyes.”
Meanwhile, pediatric ophthalmologist and ocular geneticist Dr. Michelle Lingao advises that children must be cautioned against touching their eyes constantly. “Regularly washing their hands with soap and water before touching their face or eyes can effectively combat eye irritations and infections, such as sore eyes and stye.”
Dr. Lingao also emphasizes the importance of annual comprehensive eye exams.
“Children do not know if they are experiencing any eye problem because they assume that whatever vision they have is normal. Keen observation of their habits when reading or watching TV and regular eye exams will help in the early detection and treatment of any possible eye condition.”
Asian Eye Institute has a pediatric optometrist and pediatric ophthalmologists who can help in caring for your child’s vision. For more info, call 898-2020. (Story/photos by Charizze Henson)