Here are some tips from the Canadian Association of Optometrists to avoid bothersome symptoms, especially in childhood when vision is not fully developed.
Generally, video games do not cause eye or vision problems.
As adults, spending several hours in front of a screen can cause straining of the eyes. Children often have more fatigue for the same time in front of screens because their eyes strain more.
Children need good visual skills for their learning and play. It is therefore all the more important to avoid the symptoms caused by long exposure to screens.
Even with good vision, these symptoms can appear when playing video games: blurred vision, eye fatigue, headaches...
Here are some tips from the Canadian Association of Optometrists:
- Do not play in a dark room to avoid contrast with the brightness of the screen. Prefer subdued lighting.
- Avoid reflections on electronic screens. To do this, avoid placing the screen in front of or behind a window or a strong light source.
- Adjust the brightness and contrast of the screen used for games in relation to the lighting in the room.
- Remind your child to blink regularly. On average we blink 12 times per minute, while in front of a screen, only 5 times per minute. This can cause dry eyes.
- Apply the 20-20-20 rule: pause for 20 seconds, every 20 minutes to look 20 feet (about 6 meters).
- Encourage the child to sit away from the screen, at least 70 cm. Being close does not damage the eyes, but our eyes have to strain more for a clear image. Also, the defects of the image are less perceived from afar which is less tiring.
- Ideally, place the gaming screen a little lower than the nose.
- Establish regular breaks and vary activities: outdoor activities, creative activities, video games, quiet activities, board games... This helps balance vision from afar and near vision.
A child who stands close to the screen may be nearsighted. In addition, if your child is already myopic, it is very important that he wears his glasses during video games.