Children Need Outdoor Play for Healthy Eyesight

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Environment plays a bigger role than genetics, experts now believe.

Getting children to play outside will benefit their eyesight and reduce their risk of becoming shortsighted, Science Alert reports.

Shortsightedness, or myopia, is becoming increasingly common all over the world, and is expected to affect nearly 4.8 billion people by 2050, about 2.8 billion more people than in 2010.

Experts say we’ve been underestimating how our eyesight is affected by the environment, particularly the outdoors and there is a growing body of research that suggests outdoor play time can lower a child’s risk of developing myopia.

Being outdoors forces you to look further into the distance, and exposure to outdoor lighting is also thought to be vital, since it appears to slow the axial growth of the eye. Excessive growth is what contributes to myopia.

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