Video: Eye Health Comes into Focus with Increase in E-Readers

The following video report was a collaborative effort of the News Literacy Project, De La Salle Academy journalism students Tayun, Maliha, Zipporah, Domenique and NLP journalist fellow Margaret “Peggy” Collins of Bloomberg News.

Effect of E-Books on Vision from De La Salle Academy on Vimeo.

Nowadays the issue of eye health is coming into focus as digital technology expands into every aspect of our lives. E-readers, portable gaming consoles, laptops and other gadgets are especially affecting younger children who spend a lot of time using them. Awilda Sosa, owner of Angel Eyes Optical, has noticed an increase in visits from younger patients.

“I see more kids wearing bifocals, which is two types of prescription – one for distance and one for reading – and I believe it has to do with the new technology,” she said.

The American Optometric Association says the glare of computer screens can lead to Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS.) Tablets such as the iPad and the Kindle Fire have back-lit screens, which means users could experience the eye strain, headaches, loss of focus, blurred vision, and even head and neck pain associated with the syndrome.

According to experts,the best thing to prevent this when reading on an iPad or any other device is make sure the back light is no brighter than the light in the room.

Amazon has tried to prevent most of these eye conditions by using “E-Ink,” a kind of digital type that makes the wording clear and sharp on some of its devices.

According to, an independent website created by vision industry experts, blinking often can help because it helps keep eyes moist. Exercising eyes can also help prevent eye strain. After 20 minutes of reading a digital device, experts suggest that users look at an object across the room for about 20 seconds.

And, of course, everyone should make regular visits to the eye doctor, suggested Sosa.

“The best thing is to get their eyes checked and to get glasses that are appropriate, which will help them when they need to see something close or see something far,” said Sosa, referring especially to younger patients. “I think the problem is because most kids are using one lens, which is just distance, which is different than computers, so if they would get glasses that are appropriate for that, then I think they would be OK.”

As e-books come of age, it’s clear to see that parents and kids should take the doctor’s advice.


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Categories: Health, Video & Audio Projects


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