eye care for all

The eyes may be the mirrors of the soul but they're also one of the most misunderstood parts of the body.

There are some common conditions in the eye which are called 'refractive errors' or simply put the errors which require the use of glasses or spectacles.

The most common one amongst them is 'Myopia'.

Myopia, also known as near-sightedness and short-sightedness, is a condition of the eye where the light that comes in does not directly focus on the retina but in front of it, causing the image that one sees when looking at a distant object to be out of focus, but in focus when looking at a close object.

Myopia is most commonly corrected through the use of corrective lenses, such as glasses or contact lenses. It may also be corrected by refractive surgery, though there are cases of associated side effects. The corrective lenses have a negative optical power (i.e. have a net concave effect) which compensates for the excessive positive diopters of the myopic eye. Negative diopters are generally used to describe the severity of the myopia, as this is the value of the lens to correct the eye. High-degree myopia, or severe myopia, is defined as -6 diopters or worse.

Common Eye Problems

Myopia: When the person needs to use glasses for seeing clearly for far vision and the errors are minus numbers on the prescription card eg. -2.00 D [Dioptres]

Hypermetropia: When the person needs to use glasses for seeing clearly for far vision but the spectacle errors are plus numbers eg. + 2.00 D.

Presbyopia: When the person needs glasses for near reading, such as reading books, etc. These are also plus numbers but different from the plus numbers of hypermetropia as these plus numbers come after the age of forty and are only necessary for near vision.

Astigmatism: When errors occur in a certain axis. These will read as numbers such as -0.75D @ 180 ? .They are also termed 'cylindrical errors'.

A person having myopia or hypermetropia before the age of 40 years will also get presbyopia after 40 years as this is an age related process which is inevitable.

myopia causes and its occurence

Besides the above conditions which are mainly spectacle errors there are many conditions in the eye which need to be addressed depending on the age group

School Going Children Eye Problems

Let us take example of India, 2% to 4% of India's children develop a squint [cross-eyed] and/or amblyopia [lazy eye]. Early detection and treatment of these disorders during childhood is essential for preventing permanent vision loss".

In many cases the child doesn't see well out of one eye, as there may be a refractive error [spectacle number] in just that one eye. Here the eyes do not work as a team to see. If your child's brain doesn't receive visual images from that eye, eventually the brain will "shut off" that eye and vision could be permanently impaired. This condition is often undetected because the child has learnt to read from the good eye. During an eye examination, where each eye is separately checked, one can diagnose this condition.

Examination of vision among pre-school and primary school-going children is very rarely practiced in India unless an obvious problem is noted. Often the problem is dealt with too late. It is possible to check the vision in children who cannot read alphabets. All children attending kindergarten must be checked at admission.

Detection of Common Eye Problems

1. Basic eye examination for every newborn by the pediatrician.

2. First detailed eye examination for all children age of 6 months. Again at 2 years, and then annually. Screenings at school are designed to alert parents to the possibility of a visual problem, but not take the place of a visit to an eye doctor. One study found that 11.3 percent of children who passed a vision screening were found to have a vision problem in need of correction.

Eye Care For Children

3. Detailed eye examination by a pediatric ophthalmologist in the presence of visual impairment.

4. Follow-up annual examination by a pediatric ophthalmologist is recommended to stay on top of your child's visual needs, as well as ensure that your child's prescription for eyeglasses is still correct. The visual system is developing along with your child, so annual prescription changes are common.

Higher Risk at Younger Age

"Many pediatric eye doctors believe that heavy computer use among children puts them at risk for early myopia [short sightedness]" The average child now spends one to three hours per day on the computer doing homework, talking online with friends, and playing games. Parents encourage children as young as two or three years old to use the computer. Several recent studies have evidence that computers can have a negative impact on a child's vision. They have found that 25% to 30% of computer-using children need corrective eyewear to work comfortably and safely at the computer at home or in school. See below in tips how to prevent Computer Vision Syndrome in children.

Eye Care for Children

Tips on daily eye care for children:

  1. Diet:

    A healthy diet with emphasis on green leafy vegetables, drumstick, carrots, beetroot, fresh fruits including mango and papaya are particularly rich in Vitamin A.

  2. Lighting:

    Light source should be positioned behind your child while reading. Avoid direct glare by using shielded light. Reading material should ideally be placed 12- 14 inches away.

  3. VDU's or Visual display:

    units include TVs and computer screens. Headaches, eyestrain, burning, watering, blurring of vision, double vision and nausea can all be caused by prolong work on the VDUs.

  4. Avoid watching TV:

    in a dark room. A well-lit room with white light [tubelight] is ideal. Preferred viewing distance for watching TV is 4 metres or more.

  5. Place the computer screen at eye level:

    or slightly lower and in such a way to minimize reflection and glare. The recommended distance between the monitor and the eye for children is 18-28 inches. By viewing the computer screen closer than 18 inches, children risk straining their eyes. Parents and teachers should be aware of any behaviour that indicates potential problems, such as eye redness, frequent rubbing of the eyes, head turns and other unusual postures, or complaints of blurriness or eye fatigue. Avoidance of the computer may also be an indication of discomfort. Do not let the child sit for more than 40 minutes continuously in front of a computer monitor.

  6. Swimming:

    Water tight swimming goggles prevents irritation due to chlorine and reduces the chances of infection.

  7. Sports:

    If your child is involved in ball games and /or contact sports protective eye wear made of polycarbonate is recommended.

  8. UV light:

    Exposure to sunlight is healthy in moderation and helps in the making if Vitamin D by the body. Too much exposure to bright sunlight is harmful and can cause damage. Wide brimmed hats and UV filtering sunglasses provide adequate protection.

  9. Application of 'kajal':

    Kajal is usually applied to the eyes of newborns, before gently washing the eyes with normal and clean water (DO NOT USE rose water). The normal circulation of tears is enough to adequately cleanse the eye of any extraneous material.
    The gift of vision is very precious. Give your child the best start in life by visiting your eye doctor today.

The gift of vision is very precious. Give your child the best start in life by visiting your eye doctor today.

Children watching tv problem

Common Myths in Kids

  1. Myth:

    Squint in a child should wait till they grow up.

    False: Generally speaking squints in children should be corrected before age 9 years. This is because later though a cosmetic treatment may be possible, the child after 9 years of age will continue to have a poorly developed vision from lazy eyes due to squint.

  2. Myth:

    Children do not need eye examinations until they are in school.

    False: It is recommended that every child's eyes be examined regularly starting at birth. Some eye problems such as crossed eyes or amblyopia (lazy eye) can result in permanent loss of sight in the affected eye if not detected and treated before the child is five or six years old.

There are simple things you can do to keep your eyes healthy and make sure you have best of the visions of this beautiful world.

But how often do you get good eye care guides at a single page?

We are sharing some great eye care tips with you, read them to improve your eyesight and make your eyes attractive.

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