12 Eyesight Myths It’s High Time to Stop Believing
There are unchanging traditions that are carefully followed by all parents of the world and gently passed down from generation to generation. For example, such frequently used phrases as “Don’t put on someone else’s glasses or you’ll go blind!“ or ”Don’t watch TV so much or you’ll go blind!"
We at Bright Side decided to check the most widespread fears of parents concerning blindness. Are they all really true?
There are different types of water to consider here.
- Water in a bath or a pool can be dangerous because of the chlorine that is used for disinfecting tap water. Worn-out water pipes (if the house is old) may be the cause of harmful microorganisms in the water that can lead to irritation or bacterial conjunctivitis. So it is better to keep your eyes closed and protected in this case.
- Fresh water is safe for swimming with open eyes, but only if you do it in ecologically clean areas.
- You can open your eyes in salt water, but the comfort of this will depend on the level of salt concentration. For example, it is easier to open your eyes in the Baltic and the Black Seas, but the Mediterranean and the Red Seas won’t be very comfortable. You should do it gradually, like this.
It is one of the most widespread childhood myths. In reality, it’s impossible to go blind from welding, but it is easy to get an eye burn. Welders cover their faces for a reason: they protect them not only from sparks but from strong ultraviolet radiation as well.
Have you ever watched gamers? They blink approximately once every 2 minutes, while the norm is once every 15-20 seconds. When we sit in front of a screen, we also do it without even noticing. Infrequent blinking leads to infrequent refreshment of the tear film. The cornea dries out, and we start complaining about weariness, eye tension, headaches, and blurry vision. This is the only known harm modern screens can do to our eyes.
The idea that bad eyesight is inherited is simply a misconception. Predisposition to illnesses may be inherited, but it doesn’t mean that it becomes a reality. It depends on your lifestyle, profession, bad habits, and eye stress.
Many people believe that glasses are a sign that you have lost the battle with bad eyesight and accepted your fate. But, in reality, optics merely help the eye to adjust to the necessary sharpness. It means that glasses aren’t an exercise machine or a medicine but simply a tool to help you see with the eyesight defect you currently have.
Many people believe that if you constantly eat huckleberries and carrots, you will have perfect eyesight. It is only true if you eat about 6 kilos of carrots and several buckets of huckleberries a day. That is why it is a good idea to take vitamins instead, which are made from extracts of these products.
"If you squint to look at your nose and someone frightens you at that moment, you will forever remain like this." A familiar childhood belief, right? Well, this isn’t true. If you squint like this (and this movement even has a scientific name: convergence), you will only cause unpleasant sensations that are usually attributed to eye weariness. Perhaps you don’t even notice this, but your eyes always slightly move toward your nose when you’re looking at something close up. And whether you are frightened at that moment or not, they won’t remain like that forever.
One medical journal recently described a curious case: 2 girls complained about a temporary worsening of vision in one eye. It turned out that before going to sleep, they both lie in the dark with their gadgets, with one eye almost hidden in the pillow and the other one looking at the screen. That’s why one eye was used to the light, while the other one had to adjust to the change in lighting. But this habit didn’t affect their eyesight in general. However, it is still a good idea to look at screens of different gadgets with at least some lights on to avoid extra stress on your eyes.
You can. Recent research even proved that people prone to myopia develop this illness at a slower rate if they read while lying on their backs.
Your eyesight won’t radically worsen if you simply try on someone else’s glasses. But if you wear them for a long time, it can lead to different kinds of disorders, from weariness to myopia or amblyopia.
You’re unlikely to go blind, but it’s very easy to get a cornea burn (photokeratitis). You don’t even have to look directly at the sun for this — it is enough to just look at reflective surfaces, like snow, sand, or water, which intensify ultraviolet exposure.
As mentioned in the paragraph above, the snow, thanks to its reflective properties, is rather dangerous for the eyes. It can reflect up to 80% of ultraviolet radiation. So people who wear sunglasses during sunny winter are probably right. Besides, it’s even more important to wear sunglasses in winter because it’s nearly impossible to avoid looking at the snow.
Northern people who live among the ice and snow have always followed this rule. Since ancient times, they have had their own sunglasses made of ivory with a narrow opening instead of glass.
Bonus: If you see red, you’re normal.
We all know that different people see the same colors differently. It happens because 1 in 4 people are colorblind to some degree, but they just don’t know about it. Scientists proved that one person’s red might be another person’s blue or green.
And, finally, if you feel any kind of eye discomfort, it’s better to be safe than sorry — consult a doctor. Ophthalmologists are often the first ones to discover such diseases as diabetes or brain tumors.