May 2013

 

CORNEA

 

Studies indicate that outdoor time could minimize nearsightedness in children


   

Nearsightedness in children may be prevented or minimized by spending time outdoors, according to studies recently published in the May issue of Ophthalmology.

Two separate studies were conducted, one in Taiwan and another in Denmark. The first found that children's risk of nearsightedness was reduced when they were required to spend recess time outside. The Danish study was the first to show a direct correlation between seasonal fluctuations in daylight, eye growth and the rate of nearsightedness progression.

According to a press release on the studies, nearsightedness in children can be corrected, but it can also lead to a more serious condition with age or risks for other eye disorders and diseases. The study in Taiwan compared myopia rates in children from one school from 2009-2010 to children at a control school. The first group of children participated in outdoor time for 80 minutes a day, while the control school's children were not required to have an outdoor recess. Both groups received eye exams at the beginning and end of the study, and fewer children who had been required to participate in outdoor recess ended up showing signs of nearsightedness.

The study in Denmark was from a 2005 clinical trial, which split 235 Danish children into seven groups to account for the fluctuation of daylight hours in the country. The children in this study already had presence of myopia, and to determine its progression, the axial eye length was measured at the beginning and end of the study. An elongation of the eye is an indication that myopia is worsening, and in those children who spent more time in the daylight, there was less average eye growth than in those who had less access to daylight hours.

Studies indicate that outdoor time could minimize nearsightedness in children Studies indicate that outdoor time could minimize nearsightedness in children
Ophthalmology News - EyeWorld Magazine
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2016-07-08T15:40:38Z
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