There has been a rise in the number of young people with poor eyesight around the world and this looks likely to increase in the coming years, a new study suggests.
Research carried out on behalf of the Ministry of Education and seen by China Daily shows that more than one in four primary school pupils and 84 per cent of students at college have some form of vision problem.
This is a huge increase in the proportion of seven to 22-year-olds with vision problems over the last decade and the figures suggest that this is only likely to increase in the coming years.
The demand for glasses and contact lenses to treat the vision problems has also risen substantially, with a ten percentage point rise in vision problems among girls since 2005 alone.
It also revealed that those who live in rural areas are likely to have poorer eyesight than those in cities, perhaps due to having less frequent visits to eyecare professionals.
The survey comes after optometric physician Edwin Ambo recently told the Issaquah Press that parents need to keep a close watch on their children"s vision if they are to safeguard their long-term sight.
Recommending regular testing for youngsters, he said that vision is a "huge part" of a person"s quality of life in general and therefore it is important to take extra care over maintaining eyesight.
by Adrian Galbreth