It's important to separate fact from fiction, especially when the topic is eyesight. Knowing how to take good care of your eyes is the first step to protecting your sight for a lifetime.
You have probably heard a lot of these myths over the years and often wondered how true they are. Below, we’ve listed the top 5 myths we’ve heard through talking with patients. What are some others you have heard?
1. Myth: Sitting Too Close to the TV Will Damage Your Vision
Fact: There is no evidence to suggest that watching television for too long or sitting too close can damage your eyes. Sitting closer than necessary to the television may give you a headache or cause eye fatigue and dryness due to digital strain but it will not damage your vision.
2. Myth: There's Nothing You Can Do To Prevent Sight Loss
Fact: At the very first sign of symptoms, such as blurred vision, eye pain, flashes of light, or sudden onset of floaters in your vision, you should see your doctor. Regular eye exams can prove instrumental in diagnosing eye related issues early on and treating them in a timely manner. This can help save your vision.
3. Myth: Reading in the dark will damage your eyes
Fact: Reading in dim light can cause eye fatigue or even a slight headache, but it will not hurt your eyes permanently.
4. Myth: Not everyone gets cataracts
Fact: A cataract is the clouding of the natural human lens. Believe it or not, the first symptom of the aging of our eyes that will ultimately lead to cataract formation is the need for reading glasses in our 40’s. So, doctors always tell their patients that if they are blessed to live long enough, they will all get cataracts.
5. Myth: An Eye Exam is Only Necessary If You're Having Problems
Fact: This couldn’t be more false. There are many silent enemies of the eyes – glaucoma, macular degeneration, diabetes and hypertension to name but a few – that only a routine eye examination can pick up. Everyone should follow a proper eye health program that includes a regular eye exam, whether or not they're having any noticeable signs of problems.
When myths are treated as fact, proper eye care suffers. Don’t wait till you’re 40 (another myth) to get annual eye checks, since early detection is the best treatment!
This post originally appeared on Preventing Blindness.