Are you worried about your child’s weak eyesight? Wondering how to help him improve his eyesight? This article provides suggestions and tips to improve your child's eyesight
By Ashwin Dewan
Children develop their visual skills as they grow but not every child will possess the perfect 20/20 vision. Some may have weak eyesight which often manifests as either a) near-sightedness (myopia) or b) farsightedness (hyperopia).
Eye exercises keep the muscles of the eyes well-toned and ensure the ophthalmic nerves receive a steady supply of blood, which leads to improved vision.
Regular eye exercises help not only relieve eye strain but also improve focus and concentration. So, make your children understand the importance of caring for their eyes and encourage them to do these simple exercises. Supervise them until they can begin doing the exercises on their own.
Make your child hold a pencil at an arm’s length and tell him to focus on it. Let your child slowly bring the pencil closer to his nose. Make him move the pencil farther from his vision until he can no longer keep it in focus. This exercise can be repeated about 9 to 10 times a day.
Make your child roll his eyes in clockwise direction for a few seconds. After this, he should roll them counter-clockwise for a few seconds. This exercise should be repeated four to five times.
Try to make your child rapidly flutter his eyelids by repeatedly blinking 20 to 30 times. After this, he should close his eyes for some time to give them a little rest. This should be done twice daily.
Take your child outside when the sun is shining and tell him to close his eyelids. Allow the sun to shine on your child’s closed eyelids. Instruct him to breathe deeply. Do this exercise daily for a few minutes.
Tell your child to imagine a large clock. Ask him to look at where the center of the clock would be, then imagine a number and look at where the number would be on the clock. Once done, he should look back to the center. This exercise should be repeated at least 10 times a day.
Hook a ball to some string or even a shoelace and hang the ball so that it is even with your child’s nose. Swing the ball and ask your child to watch it closely. He should follow the movements of the ball only with his eyes. Repeat this exercise while swinging the ball from side to side.
Light a candle and place it to your child's left side. Ask him to try to read for some time every day in the candle light. Also, he should blink his eyes once every 5 seconds.
Ask your child to close his eyes and stand facing the sun. Then, place his legs shoulder-width apart and lift one leg up at a time, moving it like a pendulum. He should practise this exercise for a minute every day.
Ask your child to throw a ball with his right hand and catch it with the left. Then, throw it in the reverse direction. He should watch the movement of the ball as he throws it and blink every time he catches the ball with one hand. He should remember to throw the ball at lower than eye level.
Tell your child to bounce the ball with one hand and catch it with the other. The ball should bounce in a V-like motion. While doing this, he should follow the movement of the ball with his eyes.
Healthy habits for eyes
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As parents, it is our duty to ensure that our children begin doing the above-mentioned eye exercises early on. An early start will not only make your child’s eyesight strong but also ensure they do not have to rely on eyeglasses and contacts later in life. Simple eye exercises coupled with a good diet can help your little one enjoy the benefits of naturally healthy eyes.
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