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Myopia in kids is soaring – and screen time isn’t the only factor

The number of kids with myopia (nearsightedness) is soaring – and screen time isn’t the only factor

Shari Rudavsky Indianapolis Star

INDIANAPOLIS – When her oldest child came home from school and said vision screening had revealed he would need bifocals, Kailey Welch was shocked. He was only 12.

Sure, she wore prescription lenses herself, but she didn’t start until she was well into adulthood. To her greater surprise, three of Welch’s seven other children also have needed glasses. Today, the four oldest of the eight children in her blended family must wear glasses for up-close work.

The likely reason, according to her doctor: devices, both at home and at school.

Now, the mother closely monitors the younger four children’s screen time and tries to ensure that the older four wear glasses when reading.

“I’m definitely paying more attention to it,” Welch said.

So are eye specialists. The Welch family represents a trend they have been watching with some alarm for the past decade: a steep increase in the number of children who need corrective lenses.