Is Sitting Too Close to the TV Really Bad for You?

I think we’ve all heard the old adage that sitting too close to the TV could be very bad for you. Back in the 1960’s it might have been a problem since the old, boxy dinosaurs that were what passed for TV’s back then were made with cathode ray tubes that generated the picture. The electrons were fired at a screen covered in layers of phosphorus and a layer of lead so as to avoid firing the harmful radiation that was emitted from the CRT directly towards anyone. Unfortunately there was a faulty batch of TV’s that had a radiation leak that was finally noticed when kids started showing signs of irritated, reddened skin from sitting too close to the TV.

Thankfully no one was killed due to this manufacturing flaw but the myth of sitting too close to the TV was born out of this most likely. The only issue you might really have when it comes to the TV is the fact that you could develop eye strain from staring at the TV for too long. Fortunately this is easy to fix since all you have to do is get up and move around or focus on something else for a short while before going back to the screen. Eye strain isn’t serious but it can lead to blurred vision and a feeling of being extremely tired. The truth about sitting very close to the TV is that it won’t hurt you a single bit unless you happen to still have one of those old CRT TV’s that was from that bad batch. If by some phenomenal twist of fate one of those things is still around and still works then you might have an issue if it’s yours. Otherwise, no TV since those has been seen to harm a single person if they sit too closely.

That’s not to say that you need to sit in front of the TV screen all day. Living a sedentary life isn’t the best way to go even if you’re not entirely ambulatory. Getting up, or shifting your attention to something else for a period of time is much healthier for your eyes as it gives them a bit of rest from the TV and can allow you to focus on something else. I’m betting a lot of us that grew up with TV were told at least once or twice, if not a thousand times or more, to not sit so close to the TV because it was bad for our eyes. Well, that part isn’t completely false, but eye strain is about the worst it’s going to get if you sit that close for long periods of time. The average kid, even in today’s era, will be up and down as they watch the TV and then go play and then possibly come back. Adolescents and adults are more likely to binge-watch than anyone.

It’s just a good idea to unplug sometimes and take a walk or just do something else for a few minutes at least. Life is a little more important than TV after all.



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