In this blog, we tend to focus on the detrimental effects that sunlight can have on our eyes. When our eyes are exposed to the UV radiation in sunlight for prolonged periods of time, it can cause permanent damage and vision impairment. Fortunately, you can protect your eyes from sun damage with a simple pair of UV-resistant sunglasses.
But can low-light environments cause eye damage as well?
If you’re a parent, you’ve probably heard the rumor that reading in low light can cause lasting harm to a child’s eyes. If you were an avid reader as a kid, you may even remember your own parents turning on overhead lights and warning you about eye strain as you buried your nose in a book.
This idea that reading in low light can damage your vision has been around for generations, but according to Harvard Medical School it’s nothing more than a common myth. Although reading in a dimly-lit room can cause eye fatigue and headaches, it won’t cause your vision to deteriorate.
That said, reading in a well-lit room can make reading far more comfortable. Ideally, the light should land directly on the page to maximize contrast in the text. If that causes too much glare, use a lampshade to diffuse the light across the page. Clip-on lamps are great for kids who like to read before bed. Just attach one to the headboard and adjust it to a suitable position.
So not to worry—there’s no cause for serious concern if your child has a habit of reading in the dark. Just make sure they wear their sunglasses when they go outside.