Wednesday, January 25, 2017
Fundamental to the teachers' efforts, I imagine, is an overarching concern for my children's well-being.
So I confess I am baffled by the silence from teachers, when it comes to the health risks caused by daily classroom screen time. I would have expected educators to clamor for more information, call for medical and scientific support, and rush to mitigate the situation once they learned that daily use of digital devices poses serious health risks to their students. But that hasn't happened, despite all the media attention and medical research that has recently been made available.
And the research is clear: daily computer use damages children. Myopia tops the list. The USC Roski Eye Institute, in its largest and most recent myopia study, showed that daily screen time is the likely culprit for childhood myopia doubling in our country.
Retinal damage (which can lead to macular degeneration and blindness) is next. Prevent Blindness America and voluminous medical researchers report that children's eyes absorb more blue light than adults: the damaging HEV rays go straight to the back of a child's eye.
Blurred vision, dry eyes and headaches. Obesity, sleeplessness and anxiety. Addiction. These are the side effects of children who spend their school days online and their evenings glued to their screens for homework. It's all medically documented, and the research grows daily. (This is not hard-to-find, esoteric documentation; major news outlets across the country have covered the health hazards of screen time extensively over the past year. Search the phrases "computer vision syndrome," "digital eye strain," or "blue light damage.")...