Eyes usually get damaged when we abuse them. Especially during board examination, children tend to over strain their eyes, little realizing the long-term after effects.
Experts say, while the damage cannot be ascertained almost immediately, but most children end up with spectacles or increased power after exams.
Doctors advice that children with power should get their eyes tested to ensure that they are wearing correct glasses. "Refractive effort should be corrected at the earliest. Wrong powered glasses add a lot of unnecessary strain to the eyes and accelerate eye damage and also cause of lot of headache and nausea," warned Dr Atul Kumar, professor, ophthalmology at RP Centre at All India Institute of Medical Sciences.
"While reading, it is the near vision which comes into play. It is the ciliary muscles that contract to focus for near reading, which get tired hence need rest," said Dr Tarun Kapur, senior consultant ophthalmologist at Rockland Hospital.
"In order to reduce eye strain when working on the computer or reading, it is essential; that one takes frequent breaks, which does not mean watch TV or play computer games. One should either close his eyes or look at distant objects," he said.
Dr Kapur said that looking up from time to time from reading or from computer can help keep your eyes relaxed. He also advises that good posture while reading, studying, or working on the computer also helps reduce eyestrain. "On should not lay on your back, stomach, or side while studying. It is important to maintain a good posture, sit on table and chair while studying" he said.
Use good lighting while studying to avoid strain, say ophthalmologists. "Make sure that there is good light on close work tasks and good general room light as well. Illumination should be positioned so as to avoid glare from your reading material," said Dr Kumar.
"Blink rate slows down when one is concentrating too much. Drying of the eyes is extremely harmful hence it is important that one puts extra effort to blink so as to keep the eyes moist," said Dr Rohan Chawla, senior consultant at Max Healthcare.
"It is a good idea to lubricate eyes using tear drops, which are easily available at all chemist shops. One should only check that it does not have any preservatives," he said.
"Quality and quantity of good sleep is a must. Only if the mind is fresh, will the body be active and importantly it is also good for the eyes," says Dr Kapur. Doctors also advice that children should avoid watching TV and working on the computers as much as possible. "Additional eye stain should be best avoided," added Dr Kapur.
Pointers to protect your eyes: