After over two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, some schools are finally opening their doors for face-to-face classes. While some are opting to continue the online teaching route, and others have chosen to try a hybrid setup of learning, this new development is a sign that the country is slowly but surely adapting to a new normal.
With the start of a new school year, experts have studied how the pandemic and the subsequent social distancing and quarantine protocols affected schoolchildren. Homeschooling and online learning became essential for students during this time, but this also increased screen time and mobile device usage, which led to a significant rise in myopia cases, or nearsightedness, in children.
The worsening eyesight of Filipino children has been a developing problem for many years now. In 2016, the Department of Health (DOH) announced that 10% of grade school-age children have eye problems. Many of the cases stay undetected until the condition has grown worse.
In 2018, during the Department of Information and Communications Technology’s (DICT) National Digital Parenting Conference, it was revealed that 29% of Filipino children suffer from nearsightedness.
Today, 30% of children have to wear glasses in order to see clearly - not just in the Philippines but worldwide.
Though this may be alarming, eye doctors and experts have determined several ways that parents can help decrease the risk of their child developing impaired vision.
First, it is recommended for children - and even adults - to take frequent breaks, regulate screen time, use larger screens from farther away, and follow an early bedtime, especially if they are required to use a mobile device regularly in their studies or work. These small changes enable the eyes to rest and lessen the possibility of eye strain.
Second, doctors also recommend developing a healthier, more active lifestyle. Encouraging children to play outdoors or get involved in sports keeps them busy and occupied, lessening the probability that they will turn to mobile devices for entertainment and leisure. It is also helpful to visit an eye doctor and schedule regular appointments, so that eye health can be monitored.
Finally, give kids a multivitamin supplement that also promotes better eye health. Hi-Smart is an over-the-counter multivitamin supplement specially formulated with Taurine, which prevents retinal degeneration, and Vitamin A, which is essential for good eyesight. Hi-Smart also contains Lysine to stimulate a healthy appetite, B Complex for muscle building, Vitamin D3, Vitamin C and Zinc to help boost immunity, growth, and development, and Folic Acid for healthy cell reproduction.
Education promises a bright future ahead, but taking care of children’s eyes ensures they will be able to see it happen.
Distributed exclusively by New Marketlink Pharmaceutical Corporation (NMPC), Hi-Smart is
available in drugstores nationwide and comes in syrup form and oral drops for younger children. To know more about Hi-Smart, head on to https://nmpc.com.ph/product/hi-smart/.