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The Effect of the E-Learning Teaching Model on Ocular Health during the COVID -19 Pandemic: a Cross-Sectional Questionnaire based Study on School Children

Journal: International Journal of Science and Research (IJSR) (Vol.10, No. 5)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 1056-1061

Keywords : COVID 19; e-learning; screen time;

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Context: The mandatory e-learning has emerged as a method for current teaching and learning in universities and schools with the COVID-19 pandemic. This calls for introspection into the potential deleterious health disorders resulting due to increased ?screen time? in school going children. Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the occurrence of symptoms of computer vision syndrome (CVS) in young students due to prolonged screen time. Settings and design: Cross-sectional, questionnaire-based study conducted five months after the initiation of lockdown in India in school going children attending five schools of a metropolitan city in Eastern India. Subjects and methods: Pre-structured and pre-validated questionnaire was given as an online survey form in the social media school groups. Questions regarding hours of daily online classes, gadget used, whether any symptoms of eye strain occurred after or during online classes were asked. We also delved into the issue of any eye-comfort seeking behavior, any new use of spectacles, changes in spectacle power or visit to the ophthalmologist. Statistical analysis: Association between hours of online class and symptoms of eye strain, new use of spectacles or recent change in spectacle power by Spearman?s rank correlation coefficient. Results: The mean duration of screen time was 4.54?4.45 hours per day. 80.4% rely on small screens of mobile phones to avail online classes. 15% needed spectacles due to progressive blurred vision and 23.3% recorded changes in the power of their spectacles during lockdown. There was a positive correlation between the hours of screen time and the development of symptoms of eye strain especially neck pain or stiffness (rho = 0.279), headache (rho=0.0.270), backache (rho=0.264), blurred vision (rho=0.216), shoulder pain (rho=0.203), redness of eyes with tears (rho=0.162), pain in the eyes (rho=0.140), new spectacle use or change of spectacle lens power during online classes (rho=0.661). Conclusions: The current study highlights the higher prevalence and positive correlation of CVS among school children exposed to long screen hours in the COVID pandemic. There is a need to educate people about limiting overall screen exposure and ergonomic methods of screen viewing.

Last modified: 2021-06-26 18:57:34