5 myths about eyesight your mum may have told you

Friday, 24 March 2017 by Callan Smith-Sheerin

No doubt at some point in your childhood your mum told you to move back from the TV or 'you'll get square eyes'. The Vision Direct team were thinking about this when we realised that there's a fair few things our mums used to say about eyesight that never came true. We decided to compile our 5 favourites and find out if these were true or if our mums were just having us on.

Reading in dim light damages your eyesight


This isn't true. If you can make out the words on the page easily, then you've got enough light.

If it's a particularly dim light, you may struggle to make out the words and this can lead to eye strain, but it won't damage your eyes permanently.

If you sneeze with your eyes open, they'll pop out


Again, this isn't true. Your eyes are pretty secure and are not connected to your nose. This means the force of a sneeze won't make your eyes pop out. Even if they were connected, your eyelids are not particularly strong muscles so they wouldn't be able to prevent them popping out from such a force.

Eyes often close when you sneeze as a simple reflex, but many people can sneeze with their eyes open.

If you sit close too close to the TV screen, you'll get square eyes


It's pretty clear that this doesn't happen. But can sitting too close to the screen damage your eyesight? It has been claimed that children can focus on close up screens better than adults and so tend not to suffer from eyestrain.

If your child sits close to the TV to be able to make out the picture, however, it's likely to be a sign of nearsightedness and so they should go for an eye test.

Eating carrots will help you see in the dark


Carrots are great for your eye health, providing you with plenty of vitamin C and beta-carotene to help keep your eyes healthy and prevent eye conditions. They cannot, however, help you to see in the dark unless you suffer from the particular condition night-blindness, in which case they can improve it, not cure it.

For more about how carrots came to be perceived as the perfect night-vision food, check out our blog.

If you cross your eyes, they'll get stuck like that


Even if the wind does change, fortunately this won't happen.

So, you can cross your eyes to your hearts content!

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