What are Eye Exercises? – History, Therapy, Benefits, and Screens Affect
What are Eye Exercises?
The “miraculous” eye exercises to improve vision come and go. You might find someone on the internet who is raving about them (but who doesn’t offer any proof of their effectiveness).
Typically, these programs, which claim to reduce or eliminate your need for glasses and contact lenses, do not result in any significant or lasting improvement in your vision. Also, they could affect your safety if you stop wearing corrective lenses because you think eye exercises have improved your eyesight.
History of Eye Exercises
Eye exercises to improve vision have been about since the 1920s when American physician William Horatio Bates created an eye exercise program known as the Bates Method.
The Bates Method has never been honest in significantly or lastingly improving vision. In addition, some activities Bates recommends, including “sunbathing” (exposing your eyes to direct sunlight) and “palming” (covering your locked eyes with the palms of your hands), could be potentially harmful to your eyes.
For example, frequently exposing your eyes directly to direct sunlight, even with your eyes closed as Bates recommends, increases your risk of sun damage and skin cancer of the eyelids, which accounts for 5-10% of all skin cancers, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.
Eye Exercises vs Vision Therapy
One final note: Self-help eye exercise programs to improve vision are not the same as supervised vision therapy programs prescribed by eye care professionals to correct particular eye alignment and other binocular vision problems.
Although the term “eye exercises” is sometimes used (incorrectly) to refer to vision therapy, vision therapy programs under the direction of an eye care professional include specific activities to help correct vision problems. A vision such as amblyopia and strabismus or to improve dynamic visual skills for sports vision.
Can Eye Exercises Change my Eyes?
To better understand whether eye exercises that promise “natural vision enhancement” can reduce refractive errors, you have to consider the anatomy of the eye and how the eye refracts light.
Problems with the shape of the eye often contribute to focusing errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. For example:
When the eyeball is too short, you have farsightedness and cannot focus on close objects because light rays entering the eye find a point of focus somewhere beyond the retina.
So if you’re considering an eye exercise program to improve your vision, ask yourself these questions.
Why do Screens Affect the Eyes?
First, it is essential to mention that the eyes are designed to see far away, at more than 6 meters. In contrast, the watch needs to make an extra effort to focus on the object to see up close. This process is called accommodation, and carrying it out for a long time can cause asthenopia and visual fatigue.
An article from the American Optometric Association points out that this condition occurs because the text on screens is less defined, therefore, more challenging to focus on than on a printed page. Also, its level of sharpness is reduced by screen reflections. It must be added that when the gaze is fixed on one point, the person tends to blink less, so the dryness intensifies, causing pain or itching.
Exercises for the Eyes that you have to do Daily
The discomfort caused by prolonged exposure to screens is usually relieved by changing habits and performing specific exercises to rest your vision. Next, we detail what they are.
Blinking frequently is essential when you spend a lot of time in front of the computer or mobile, making the eyeball cool and hydrated. With this, you will avoid the annoying symptoms of dry eye syndrome. Therefore, pay special attention to this on a desktop or smartphone.
Please Close your Eyes
Close your eyes for 6 seconds and open them. Repeat this 7 to 10 times to relax your eyes. This is a straightforward but effective and healthy exercise to rest your eyes. You will feel greater well-being immediately without leaving your work table.
This is one of the most straightforward eye exercises you can do daily. It is within the discipline of yoga and is very relaxing. You should raise and lower your gaze slowly, without forcing it, five times. Next, place your palms in your eye sockets for 30 seconds, focus only on black, and imagine this colour getting darker and darker. After doing this activity, you will feel how the fatigue of the eyes disappears.
Massage the Eyebrows
In this exercise for the eyes, you should press lightly between the eyebrows with your thumb, applying the force from the inside to the outside of the eyebrows. With this, you will be able to relieve the tension in the area and rest your vision.
Change the Look
The gaze should be focused on different points in this exercise. First of all, look to the left and then to the right about five times. Then make circles with your eyes for about 30 seconds.
Vary the Focus
It is about making a transition between different points of view. You have to find two centres to focus on, one near and one far. Then go from the closest to the farthest point and repeat until you feel comfortable.
Do Eye Exercises Work?
A recent review of research available in peer-reviewed scientific papers by. All About Vision is unsuccessful in uncovering any studies viewing that eye exercises can significantly alter the eye’s basic anatomy or eliminate presbyopia, which no one runs away from after a certain age.
Eye exercise programs occupy a nebulous space between medical science and home remedies. Most eye care professionals disdain eye exercise programs that promise you can “get rid of glasses” due to a lack of scientific evidence of their effectiveness.
Still, on the Internet, you can find these unproven “miracle” eye exercise programs, along with conspiracy theories that ophthalmologists know the “truth” about the benefits of eye exercises but don’t tell your eyes. Their patients because then they would not be able to sell glasses, contact lenses and eye surgery.
Possible Benefits of Eye Exercises
Although there is no evidence that eye exercises improve vision, it is possible. That some “exercises” can reduce stress so that your eyes feel better, thus reducing the risk of digital eye strain.
Eye care professionals often recommend one such activity: the “20-20-20 rule.” It is simple and can be performed frequently without adverse effects.
- With the fingertips, gently press the closed eyes to activate the intraocular fluid for a few seconds.
- You can do it twice a day as soon as you get up and before going to sleep.
Eye Movement Exercise
- We usually focus on a frontal point for this reason and exercise the optic nerve. Remember to also look to the right, and the left three or four times in a row.
- Once you’ve done this exercise, try rolling your eyes to strengthen your eyeball muscles.
Massage the Orbits of the Eyes
- Give yourself a straightforward message. With the pads of your thumbs, gently press the bone under. If the eyebrows from the nose to the temple use circular movements.
- You will find it soothing to keep your eyes closed during this exercise as the darkness keeps them more relaxed.
Accommodation and Focus Exercise
- You have to place the index finger of the right hand in front of the eye at a distance. The elbow and left index finger are about 15 centimetres behind the right.
- The idea is to alternate and focus on one and the other for at least a minute.
Prevent Dry Eyes
- To avoid dry eyes, we recommend the following exercise: you must open and close. If your eyes at least 20 times to relax your facial muscles.
- It is also important that you keep your head straight and have your eyelids relaxed for this exercise.
Eye pathologies or problems cannot correct with eye exercises; however, they can help prevent or develop visual abilities when there is some difficulty and relax them.
In addition, in the highly digitised era in which we live today. If we demand a great effort every day from our eyes. Both for our leisure and in the workplace, we make excessive use of screens without rest.