- by Dr Gowher Yusuf
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- Jun 19 2017
clear all misconceptions surrounding vision in children..Myths and Facts: Vision
Read through to clear all misconceptions surrounding vision in children...
Myth: If parents have poor eyesight, their kids will inherit that trait.
Fact: Unfortunately, this one is sometimes true. If you need glasses for good vision or have developed an eye condition (such as cataracts), your kids might inherit that same trait. Discuss your family's visual history with your doctor.
Myth: Sitting too close to the TV is bad for the eyes.
Fact: Although parents have been saying this ever since TVs first found their way into our homes, there's no evidence that plunking down right in front of the TV set damages someone's eyes. Before the 1950's, television sets emitted levels of radiation that after repeated and extended exposure could have heightened the risk of eye problems in some people, said Dr. Norman Saffra, the chairman of ophthalmology at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn.
But modern televisions are built with proper shielding, so radiation is no longer an issue. While concentrating on a screen for hours on end may not cause blindness, it can lead to eyestrain. Keeping the room fairly well lighted while the television is on and peeling your eyes from the screen for an occasional break can prevent this.
Parents should also be alert for the child who keeps creeping closer to the screen. Not because of radiation, of course, but because the child may need glasses.
Myth: Eating carrots can improve vision.
Fact: Although it's true that carrots are rich in vitamin A, which is essential for sight, so are many other foods (asparagus, apricots, nectarines, and milk, for example). A well-balanced diet can provide the vitamin A needed for good vision, says the AAO. In any case, eating a lot of carrots won't help you see better unless you suffer from vitamin A deficiency, which is rare in the U.S. Also, eating too many carrots can be its own problem, causing your skin to turn yellow.
Myth: Computer use can damage the eyes.
Fact: According to the AAO, computer use won't harm the eyes. However, when using a computer for long periods of time, the eyes blink less than normal (like they do when reading or performing other close work). This makes the eyes dry, which may lead to a feeling of eyestrain or fatigue. So encourage your kids to take frequent breaks from Internet surfing or video games.
Myth: Only boys can be color-blind.
Fact: Color blindness occurs when you are unable to see colors in a normal way. Most commonly, color blindness (also known as color deficiency) happens when someone cannot distinguish between certain colors, usually between greens and reds, and occasionally blues. It's estimated that up to 8% of boys have some degree of color blindness, whereas less than 1% of girls do.
Myth: The eye is full size at birth.
Fact: The eye is NOT full size at birth but continues to grow with your child. According to General Ophthalmology (Vaughan, Asbury and Riordan-Eva, Appleton & Lange, Stamford, 1999), "the size of the eyeball at birth averages 16.5 mm in diameter (front to back measurement). In adults, the diameter is 24.2 mm." The maximum eye size is reached when a person is 7-8 years old. So, the eye grows 50% in diameter and to something over double its birth weight (+115%). This growth partially accounts for refractive (glasses) changes that occur during childhood.
Myth: Wearing glasses too much will make the eyes "dependent" on them.
Fact: Refractive errors (near-sightedness, far-sightedness, or astigmatism) change as kids get older. Many variables come into play, but most of this change is likely due to genetics and continues despite wearing glasses earlier or later or more or less. Wearing glasses does not make the eyes get worse.
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