Of all our senses, we probably rely on our eyesight the most for nearly everything. In everyone’s desperate attempts to prevent aging or eye degeneration, you may have come across advice from family and friends on how to keep your eyes healthy. Some of this advice may be true, but oftentimes, if you did not hear it from an optometrist, it may not be accurate. Let us dispel a few myths about vision that you may have heard!
SITTING TOO CLOSE TO THE TV OR STARING AT A SCREEN
When you were a kid, your parents may have told you that sitting too close to the TV would damage your eyes. Now, as adults, many believe that staring at computer screens and phones is equally as damaging.
The truth is there is no evidence backing that claim. While staring too long at a screen can cause eye fatigue, dry eyes, headaches, and neck pain, there is currently no scientific proof that it causes permanent damage to your eyes. The negative symptoms that come with staring at a screen typically go away within a few hours.
To help alleviate these temporary symptoms, follow the 20-20-20 rule. For every 20 minutes you spend looking at a screen, spend 20 seconds focusing on an object (that isn’t a screen) that sits about 20 feet away. This is the equivalent to stretching out your eye muscles like you would your neck and legs.
READING IN THE DARK
Some people believe that reading in the dark can damage your eyes as well. While not having sufficient light to read can cause headaches and strain your eyes, it will not cause permanent damage. If that were the case, every person who knew how to read before the 1900s would have likely been blind because they read in much dimmer conditions such as by candlelight or gas lamp.
If you do find difficulty when reading or experience eye fatigue, try brightening up your environment and stretching out your eyes with the 20-20-20 method.
WEARING GLASSES WILL MAKE YOU DEPENDENT ON THEM
Wearing glasses does not alter your eyes. Glasses simply bend light waves as they approach your eyes to make them easier for you to perceive. Your eyes do not change or adapt to the glasses over time so wearing them (or even wearing the wrong prescription) will not damage them.
CARROTS IMPROVE EYESIGHT
Carrots contain vitamin A, which is good for your eyes. However, like with any vitamin, having a surplus of it does not give you any additional benefits. Once you meet your daily nutritional need of vitamin A (which is actually only a small amount), any additional vitamins will just pass through your system.
Instead of focusing on eating just one food to improve your eyesight, a balanced diet with a variety of vitamins and minerals will be much more beneficial not only for your eyes but your overall health.
Your eyesight is important, so making sure that you are properly educated in what will and will not help to maintain your eye health is crucial. If you have any questions or concerns about your eyes, book an appointment Hill Country Vision Center today!