It's important that a child has the best vision possible when using digital devices. This starts with an examination by an eye doctor, not just a school screening. Children should have their first eye exam at six months, again at three years, before starting kindergarten and every year after that.
To avoid fatigue and digital eye strain symptoms, eye doctors recommend the "20/20/20 rule." Every 20 minutes, stop and look at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
Poor lighting often causes eye strain. Ease strain by keeping bright lights overhead to a minimum and position a desk lamp to shine on your desk, not at you. Position the computer screen in a way that reduces reflections and glare from windows or overhead lights.
Set time limits on the amount of screen time. Children under two years should have no screen time, and older children should have less than two hours per day. Be aware of how long children are using digital devices and look for digital eye strain symptoms such as squinting, rubbing of the eyes and complaints of back, neck or head pain.
The closer the eyes are to the object they're looking at, the harder the eyes have to work. A good rule is to apply the Harmon Distance (the distance between the elbow and first knuckle) as a guide. If a child is holding video games and digital devices closer than their Harmon Distance, let their eye doctor know.
Not only does outdoor play feel good, but research shows that it helps prevent the development of nearsightedness. Just remember to use sunglasses and sunscreen.