Health

Spending more time outdoor may improve eyesight

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Having more activities under the sun may give you better eyesight especially if you are a school going kid or adult, a new European eye study suggests.

The findings highlight the importance of having activities outdoor especially when many of us more often glued to the televisions, computers, laptops, smart phones or tablets.

Several surveys in the past have shown that a large number of our children are spending more time indoor. Some of them do not get safe places to play, some say they avoid outdoor due to bugs and heat, some say they do not have a natural area in their vicinity.

The lure of digital technology like computer games, urbanization, higher socioeconomic status and several other factors have also been blamed for the kids spending less time doing outdoor activities.

The researchers looked at the availability of relevant existing information with the objective of investigating their association with myopia- a common eye disorder in which a patient sees close objects clearly but the distant objects blurred.

This eyesight condition is becoming increasingly common globally and is associated with potentially sight-threatening complications.

Spending time outdoors is protective, but the mechanism underlying this association is poorly understood.

Astrid E. Fletcher, a faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and his team examined over 370 men and women with myopia and about 2,800 individuals without i and studied their exposure to ultraviolet B rays.

They found that higher annual lifetime ultraviolet B exposure, directly related to time outdoors and sunlight exposure, was associated with better eyesight and reduced odds of myopia.

Exposure to ultraviolet B between ages 14 and 29 years was associated with the highest reduction in odds of adult myopia, according to the paper published online on December 1 in the journal JAMA Ophthalmology.

“As the protective effect of time spent outdoors is increasingly used in clinical interventions, a greater understanding of the mechanisms and life stages at which benefit is conferred is warranted,” the study authors say.

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