BOSTON (CBS) – More kids are becoming nearsighted needing glasses to see far away, and a new study out of the United Kingdom identifies two possible reasons why: being born in the summer and playing computer games.
Nearsightedness tends to run in families but experts say that can’t explain the continued rise in cases. It is also associated with spending a lot of time looking at things close up, which alters how the eye grows and develops.
Researchers studied almost 2,000 twins. They found that two of the factors most strongly associated with nearsightedness were hours spent playing computer games and having a summer birth.
Kids born in the summer tend to start school at a younger age which means they’re exposed to close working earlier than other kids. And children who play a lot of computer games spend a lot time focusing close up on a screen and don’t spend as much time outdoors where their eyes are given the opportunity to focus on objects further away.