Experts explain that focusing on the same distance for an extended period can “lock” the eyes’ focusing system (accommodative spasm). This means that once your child takes their eyes away from the screen, they may have difficulty focusing.
Please take note that accommodative spasm results in blurry vision. The good news is, this condition is temporary and reversible.
They may have dry eyes
One of the possible symptoms of too much screen time is dry eyes. Studies show that people who spend too much time focusing on their screen blink less often; this can dry out the eyes and cause irritation.
For children, though, it could be worse at times.
In most cases, laptops and computers are situated above their visual field. This makes them open their upper eyelids wider, resulting in faster evaporation of the eye’s natural moisture.
How much is too much screen time?
After knowing how too much screen time affects kids’ eyes, let’s discuss the acceptable screen time for children. According to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry:
- Children younger than 18 months should not have screen time exposure save for supervised video-chatting with a relative or loved one.
- Between 18 and 24 months, children should only have supervised educational screen time.
- For children aged 2 to 5, limit screen time to 1 hour daily.
As your child grows, the one-size-fits-all limit no longer works. For instance, school-age kids use gadgets for their lessons and homework; limiting gadget use to an hour or two may not be attainable.