Perhaps all of us can recall being warned by our parents that watching TV from too close a distance can damage our eyesight. But do you think this belief, which still abounds about the eye care, is really true? Can sitting too close to the television really weaken our vision? 

Here’s the Fact!

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According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), ‘there's no evidence that sitting too close to a TV can damage your eyesight, but it may cause eyestrain’. Focusing for too long on a television or a computer screen from a closer distance can cause eye strain, blurred vision, and headache, but is unlikely to weaken your eyesight. The same condition goes for reading a book from too close to your eyes. It too causes eye strain but does not affect vision.

Children often develop the habit of holding reading materials close to their eyes or sitting right in front of the television. This is because children can focus at close distance without eyestrain, better than adults. With children, this habit usually diminishes as they grow older.

Last but not the least, keep in mind that watching TV or any screen from too close is more likely the effect rather than the cause of a weak eyesight. So the next time you notice your kid often sitting too close to the television, take him/her for an eye check-up rather than putting a ban on his/her television watching.  

However, it is certainly worthwhile to limit TV viewing time for children, in order to involve them in more socially and intellectually stimulating activities.   

For any query related to eye care, you can consult an Ophthalmologist at

About the Author

Neha Garg

Neha Garg is a clinical dietician and health writer with an outstanding academic and clinical background. A post-graduate from the prestigious Lady Irwin College, she was also a Delhi University topper. With a work experience spanning more than a decade, she has worked for renowned healthcare organizations such as Indraprastha Apollo Hospital and HealthifyMe. An avid reader and health enthusiast, she also develops customized diet plans along with personal diet consultations. Presently, she is working with EbixCash as a senior medical writer.

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