Things You Didn’t Know About Your Eyes

By Milli 1 year ago

1. You shed around 98 feet of eyelashes in your lifetime

Image Source/ RedditHuman eyelashes have a lifespan of around five months. You shed your old eyelashes regularly to allow room for new ones to come through. If we collected all of your eyelashes over your life time, it would amount to about 98 feet of eyelashes! That's crazy!

2. Your eyes can get sunburn!

Image Source/ Reddit
Everyone love spending time in the sun, and most people know to wear sunscreen to protect your skin. But not everyone knows your eyes can get sunburn too! You should always wear sunglasses when it's sunny to protect your eyes from the UV light which can cause long term damage to your eyes if you aren't careful.

3. Every person with blue eyes is related

Image Source/ Reddit
You read that right. If you have blue eyes, you share a single common ancestor with all other blue-eyed people around the world. All humans used to have brown eyes, it was a genetic mutation that appeared around 6,000 to 10,000 years ago which produced blue eyes and has been passed down many genetic lines since then.

4. 'Blind' people who were born with sight can still 'see' when they dream

Image Source/ Reddit
Some people who are born being able to see, but sadly lose their sight, still have the ability to 'see' when they dream. Researchers think this may be to do with their memory, as someone who is born blind has never been able to perceive objects in any detail to form these memories.

5. Your retinas see images upside down. Your brain flips the image for you!

Image Source/ Reddit
Everything you look at, you are actually seeing it upside down. Your brain flips this image the right way round for you (so you don't get confused). Just like a camera, your eye 'looks' and sends the data back to your brain, but your brain does the 'seeing'.

6. Eyes are 550 million years old!

Image Source/ Science
It is thought that the first eye appeared over 550 million years ago. The very first lifeforms didn't have eyes like humans and most animals do now. We all started out as single-celled organisms that used photoreceptor proteins to detect light and 'see' that way. Over time, we have evolved from those and eyeballs were formed.

7. People with blue eyes are more likely to be alcoholics!

Image Source/ Marie Claire
Studies done in America have suggested that there is a connection between having blue eyes and becoming dependant on alcohol. Meaning they are more likely to become alcoholics than people with brown eyes. Multiple sources report this link, but no one seems quite sure on why they are connected.

8. No contact lenses can be lost behind your eyes!

Image Source/ YouTube
Mythbusting time! No, your contact lenses cannot get lost behind your eyes! There is literally nowhere for them to go. The muscles and membranes in your eye make this impossible, and even if your contact lens is stuck it will eventually move into a position on your eye where it can be seen and easily removed.

9. It's ALMOST impossible to sneeze with your eyes open!

Image Source/ Healthline
The original myth is that if you sneeze with your eyes open they will pop out of your head. This is FALSE! In fact, it is very, very difficult to sneeze with your eyes open as you are overriding the natural reflex of closing your eyes. Although, people have proven it is actually possible with a great amount of effort and it did not result in any eyeballs popping out.

10. You can read someones emotions from their eyes

Image Source/ Reddit
You might have heard this before, but it is genuinely true! If you are looking at someone you love, oxytocin and dopamine (your love hormones) get a boost, and this boost acts on your nervous system in multiple ways. Not only does it make you feel happier, but it causes your pupils to dilate and become bigger! They may also dilate if you are scared due to the adrenaline response.

11. Irises are much more unique than fingerprints

Image Source/ Daily Mail
Fingerprint identification is used all over the world for security due to the unique characteristics you can use to identify people. Your irises (the coloured part of your eye) actually have 256 unique markers, making them a much more secure way of identifying people!

12. Eyes cannot be transplanted

Image Source/ University of Oxford
Eye transplants don't exist. Yet. There are at least one million nerves connecting your eye to your brain so it is too complex to complete a transplant. However, some structures of the eye, like the cornea, have been successfully transplanted for years now. This is sometimes done to cure conditions like Keratoconus.

13. Ommetaphobia is the fear of eyeballs

Image Source/ The Shumin Web
If you have an extreme fear of eyes then you have Ommetaphobia, and you probably aren't reading this article! It may be considered irrational by some, as eyes aren't exactly dangerous, but it doesn't mean it doesn't exist. It may very well interfere with your everyday life and will definitely cause you some anxiety when you have to visit an eye doctor!

14. Your eye muscles are the fastest in your body

Image Source/ Reddit
"In the blink of an eye!" is a popular phrase used because your eye muscles are the fastest muscles in your body. A blink typically lasts around 100-150 milliseconds, which is very, very quick! The average person blinks anywhere from 15 to 20 times in a minute.

15. Your eyes are nearly 50 times better than your iPhone camera!

Image Source/ Reddit
Some of the best cameras in the world have around 50 megapixels. Your brand new iPhone 13 has around 12. If your eyes were a digital camera, they would have around 576 megapixels! So no matter how good your camera says it is, it's not a patch on what you can see in real life.

16. Your baby develops eyes around 2 weeks after conception

Image Source/ Reddit
Probably before you even know you're pregnant, your baby has already started to develop their eyes. It takes just two weeks from conception for the early parts of our eyes to form, but they have a lot more growing and developing to do before birth and even after birth.

17. The cornea is the only tissues in your body with no blood vessels

Image Source/ Reddit
The cornea is the clear window of your eyes. Unlike most other tissues in the body, your cornea doesn't contain any blood vessels. It is actually DANGEROUS if you have blood vessels growing into your cornea and it must be treated immediately, often with corticosteroids.

18. The eyes are the second most complex organ in our body

Image Source/ Reddit
After your brain, your eyes are the second most complex organs in your body. Rightly so! As what would you do without them? Your eyes have over two million working parts and have more than one million nerve fibres that each connects to your one brain.

19. Green is the rarest eye colour

Image Source/ Reddit
The most common eye colour is brown! Around 70-80% of the world's population have brown eyes, but only 2% have green eyes! Interestingly, you can still be born with green eyes even if everyone else in your family has brown eyes. These genetic traits can appear many generations later.

20. Your eyes heal super quickly

Image Source/ Reddit
If you get a scratch on the front of your eye, it is often very painful due to the crazy amount of nerves in your cornea. However, it normally heals very quickly! It can take just 48 hours for your cornea to heal itself from a minor scratch if the proper care is taken.

21. Heterochromia means your eyes are two different colours

Image Source/ Reddit
David Bowie was well known for his identifiable different coloured eyes. This is called Heterochromia! Sometimes both your eyes are completely different colours and sometimes just a section of your eye is a different colour to the rest. It is often just the way you are born and nothing to worry about, just a quirk in your appearance.

22. You can't cry until you're at least 6 weeks old

Image Source/ Smithsonian Magazine
Anyone with a newborn is going to disagree with this immediately BUT your baby may be crying but they aren't producing any tears! Your tear ducts are still developing when you are born and aren't ready for around 6 to 8 weeks after birth. So your baby may be screaming, but they aren't crying real tears.

23. Your eyes automatically protect you from danger

Image Source/ Alamy
Fight or Flight! It's amazing how your body reacts. If your brain detects something dangerous flying towards you at high speed, you will automatically close your eyes. You won't even think first, it's a natural reaction to protect our eyes from harm.

24. Your newborn baby can't see colours

Image Source/ Reddit
When a baby is born, its eyes are around 2/3rds the size of its adult eyes and are very much still developing. The photoreceptor cells that see light and detail, in addition to the cone cells which perceive colour are not fully ready yet, meaning newborn babies cannot see in a lot of detail and can't see any colours until around 2 months old.

25. 4 out of 5 people who are blind don't need to be

Image Source/ IAPB
In the third world, due to lack of access to medical services, many treatable or preventable eye conditions are either not picked up or have no available treatment. Things like cataracts, trachoma or simply needing glasses, can lead to blindness, but are all easily treatable conditions if we have the right intervention.

26. Your eyes have blind spots you never even notice

Image Source/ Reddit
Each one of your eyes has a blind spot. The blind spot is where your optic nerve enters your retina and is in a different place in each eye. You will never notice these blind spots in everyday life as your brain takes details seen from your other eye to fill in the gap.

27. You have two eyes to give you depth perception

Image Source/ Zenni Optical
You would look a bit strange if you just had one eye in the middle of your head. But there is a much more complex reason to why we have two eyes than just how we look. Both of your eyes see images from different angles. Your brain puts these images together so we can judge how far away an object is, called depth perception.

28. The eye muscle is the most active in the human body

Image Source/ Adobe Stock
Your eyes are controlled by six extraocular muscles, which allow you to look up and down and side to side. These muscles are also responsible for much more complex movements, like involuntary movement of your eyes, called saccades, where both eyes move together to different targets every 50 to 60 milliseconds.

29. Your eyelashes protect your eyes from imposters

Image Source/ Reddit
We must not forget your eyelashes! They are also a very important structure and are tasked with protecting your eyes at all time. They make sure no dirt or other unwanted things enter your eyes. In addition to your eyebrows, which stop things like sweat from reaching your eyes.

30. We can see around 10 million different colours

Image Source/ Pinterest
I bet you didn't even think 10 million different colours existed. It is too many to comprehend! But your eyes see them all. Every subtle difference in shade is picked up by your eyes because they are just that clever. There are around 6 million cone cells on your retina which are responsible for seeing these colours.

31. Your eyes work just like a camera does

image source:
We mentioned that your eyes are way better than your camera ever could be, but they do share some similarities, too. Namely, your eyes actually work in the same way a camera does! Your eyes focus light onto the retina in the same way that your camera lens focuses on light.

32. Brown is the most common eye color in the world

image source:
Do you have brown eyes? If you do, you're amongst the majority in the world, because brown is actually the most common eye color across the whole planet! Over half of the world's population - over 55%, in fact - has brown eyes, and it's considered brown is the dominant eye color.

33. The cornea is a transparent covering

image source:
Your cornea is there to offer a lot of protection, but - ironically - you won't really be able to see it, because it's transparent. It protects from dirt and germs, as well as working against the rays of the sun. This transparent covering is found across the iris and the pupil.

34. The truth about 20/20 vision

image source:
You may have heard talk about '20/20 vision' and not really understanding what all the numbers about - but to put it simply, 20/20 vision just means you have normal vision. 20/20 vision has been made to sound like it's something amazing or 'super perfect' vision, but it's just regular eyesight.

35. It's not necessarily true about liars and eye contact!

image source:
Most people would agree that liars are believed to make less eye contact because they're hiding something or feeling ashamed. In fact, the opposite can be true - someone who lies a lot may hold way too much eye contact because they're trying overcompensate and purposefully not look away!

36. Pregnancy can actually affect eyesight

image source:
Pregnancy affects many things, but did you know it can also impact your eyesight? This is all thanks to those raging hormones and the changes in the body, and somebody who is pregnant might find that they have blurred vision or dry eyes, which will usually rectify itself after the baby is born!

37. Why screens make your eyes tired

image source:
We've all been victim to this - your eyes are probably tired reading this right now! - and there's a reason for that. The main reason is because you're blinking so much less when you're engrossed in a screen, and you don't even realize it. Your eye muscles are also less relaxed when looking at a screen.

38. The surprising link to sharks...

image source:
What have your eyes got to do with sharks, you might be thinking? Well, surprisingly, the human eye has something similar to a shark eye: namely, the cornea. A human cornea is actually extremely similar to a shark's cornea, and so much so that shark eyes can actually be used as human replacement eyes in surgery... (impressive but thanks, I hate it).

39. What you need to know about 'eye floaters'

image source:
What causes eye floaters? They're come from protein strands that are found floating inside the eye fluid, which then results in shadows being cast on the retina, which is why you can then spot them floating about. They will only really go away if you have them surgically removed.

40. Dry eye is more common in smokers

image source:
Tobacco smoke is actually one of the biggest irritants for eyes, so if you're a smoker, the smoke rising up your face is going to irritate. This is why dry eye is a common experience for most smokers, and it's also why people who don't smoke, but who are suffering second-hand smoke in a room, or from someone else, might have dry eyes.

41. UV exposure and your eyes

image source:
We know that it makes you flinch and close your eyes when sunlight is too bright, but those strong UV rays do more than just make it annoying to see - they can actually contribute to eye damage. UV rays have been linked to certain eye conditions, like cataracts, and this is also why sunglasses are so important!

42. The many reasons for tears

image source:
When you cry tears, it's about more than just feeling upset. As we know, your eyes can still water with tears at other times, like when you have something in your eye or suffering from allergies. This is because one purpose of tears is to protect your eyes from infection, by the tear washing away any dust or dirt.

43. Your eyes can't see 'impossible colors'

image source:
Your eye is very capable of seeing a whole load of colors, but it can't see everything. There are colors known as 'impossible' colors that your eyes simply can't see. This is because these particular colors are far too complex for what your three types of cone cells in the retina can deal with.

44. The reason you can't actually have an eye transplant

image source:
There are so many amazing things that can be accomplished in regard to surgeries and transplants, but one thing that can't be done (at least at the moment) is an eye transplant. This is because the optic nerve is so sensitive, that a surgeon wouldn't be able to wire up a new eye to the brain easily when dealing with over 1 million nerve cells!

45. Your reminder about eye makeup expiry

image source:
When talking about the eye, we also need to highlight eye makeup issues - because some people forget to check the expiry on their products, or keep them if they still have some left! The average life span for eye makeup should be three months before getting rid, and that's because of the potential for bacteria and therefore eye infections!

46. You can't cry in space

image source:
In space, no one can hear you scream - and you also won't be able to cry about it, either. You actually can't have a good crying sesh because the tears won't fall down your face due to lack of gravity. Instead, they'll just pool up in your eye and refuse to fall - which will sting, to say the least!

47. You blink over 4,000,000 times a year

image source:
Your eyes need to stay lubricated, which is what blinking is for, but you might not have realized how hard your eyes are working without you thinking about it! On average, you're going to blink around 4,200,000 times a year, with an average of 15 to 20 times a minute!

48. But babies blink less!

image source:
This high level of blinking doesn't start from birth, though. Babies blink a huge amount less than fully grown adults do, which is also why you might notice when babies have that unbreakable wide-eyed stare! Babies only blink a few times a minute. This can be down to the fact they sleep more, have less tired eyes and need less eye lubrication.

49. The 'sweet spot' for eye contact

image source:
Trying to find the right balance of eye contact on a daily basis can be like a full time job in itself. So what's the right answer? Well, most people try to aim for looking at each other for no more than seven seconds before taking a break and looking away. But a general rule of thumb is to make sure to hold eye contact around 90% of the time if you want to show someone you're listening!

50. Cleaning contact lenses with water is actually a bad thing

image source:
Contact lense cleaning solution should be used by anyone wearing contact lenses, and this is more than just an avoidable extra expense. You might think tap water can do no harm if you use it - even just once - to clean contact lenses, but it will actually do more harm than good because it can lead to eye infections.

What To Read Next

Load More