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Kids Health: Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Playing Outside

Kids Health: Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Playing Outside

Advice that is given to adults suffering with mental or physical ailments is to go outside and get some fresh air, and exercise if able. It is about time that this advice is suggested for children as well. Not only will it aid in taking care of some small issues seen immediately, it will also help to mold them by providing the domain to interact with other children and learn social skills that will stay with them as they grow older and interact with larger groups.

Vision

In a study done by Optometry and Vision Science, it was found that those children who spend time outside have better distance vision than those children that play primarily indoors. The way in which children play outside requires them to use their distance vision much more frequently than those who play indoors, as nothing that they would be looking at could be any significant distance away.

Social Skills

Kids that get outside and have unstructured play time are exposed to having a wider range of skills. For example, on a playground, a group of kids will need to decide who goes down the slide first, because it is just not possible for all of them to go down at once. Playing on a playground is more than just running around outside—it provides a venue for the children to learn social skills, behavior skills, and executive functions through the playing.

Attention Span

Research shows that outdoor settings can appear to reduce the ADHD symptoms in children. This exposure to natural settings though weekend and after school activities can be very effective in reducing the attention deficit symptoms in children. Playing outdoors allows for the children to have less distractions, and lets them focus on the larger picture rather than micro tasks that might be had indoors like switching video games, movies, or shows.

Stress Reduction

Natural stress relievers are the way to go with children. Spending time outside is an enormous outlet for kids to release stress. It relaxes them and in turn heals them. These green spaces can also help to decrease the stress levels in children. This advice is given to adults time and time again, and it should be recognized for children as well. Playing outside allows the child to play rough with their toys if needed and allows them to sweat all the bad stuff out. They will generally need to be less careful with how they play, releasing inhibitions that might be had if playing indoors.

Vitamin D

So many kids suffer from deficiencies in Vitamin D, which can lead to other problems like heart disease, diabetes, and bone related problems. Vitamin D can be taken in by a supplement, but a free and all natural way to get it is through sunlight. A few minutes in the sun without sunscreen will be okay, and then put the sunscreen on. If the child is one that will burn with ease, put on the sunscreen immediately, and increase their intake of foods high in vitamin D.

Credits:

Optometry and Vision Science

Learn And Play Montessori School

American Academy of Pediatrics

The post Kids Health: Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Playing Outside appeared first on NaturalNews Blogs.

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Updated: March 19, 2016 — 2:30 pm

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