A stocking full of festive eye facts

Festive eye facts
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, like us you’re probably enjoying all the festive sights our eyes allow us to see. From beautifully twinkling and bedecked Christmas trees to sparkling fairy lights and those brightly wrapped presents under the tree. Have you ever thought about how different Christmas would be without our vision?  Take a minute or two to learn a few interesting facts about our eyes (we’re fairly certain a few will be a surprise!
  1. Did you know that our eyes are one of the first organs to develop after conception?. In fact, a fetus’s eyes begin to develop just two weeks after conception. 
  2. Incredibly our eyes weigh just 7 grams each (or a quarter of an ounce for those of us who still use imperial). 
  3. They measure just 24.2 millimetres in diameter, just over 1 inch.
  4. When we are born, our eyes are about 70% of the size they will reach in adulthood. That said, our ears and our noses never stop growing.
  5. Our eyes are complex organs. They are composed of more than 2 million parts – every one has a specific function!
  6. Amazingly the muscles responsible for moving our eyes are the strongest in the body relative to their size.
  7. The eyes our friends and family see aren’t exactly the whole picture. In fact, just one-sixth of our eyes are visible.

Eyelashes

  1. If we took all the eyelashes we shed throughout our lives and line them up end to end, it would measure over 30 meters, that’s almost 100 feet in length!
  2. Our eyelashes are more than just a pretty facial feature. They actually do a job! They catch dust and debris before any nasty substances can get into our eyes.

Blinking

  1. On average, we all blink about 12 times each minute. Less if looking at a computer screen. This is why it’s important to remember to look away occasionally and give those eyes a rest.
  2. On average a blink takes about 0.3 seconds. If we were to add up all our blinks throughout the day, it would amount to about 30 minutes. A bit of a cat nap really!
Tears
  1. As we grow older we all produce fewer tears. This is the reason why dry eyes become problematic as we age.
  2. Our tears are essential to help us see clearly and to maintain the health of our eyes.
  3. Did you know that our bodies make three types of tears; 
  1. a) Basal tears are in our eyes all the time, they lubricate, nourish and protect our corneas
  2. b) Reflex tears are formed when our eyes need to wash away harmful irritants, such as foreign bodies. Our eyes release them in greater amounts than basal tears. They also contain more antibodies to help us fight bacteria and infections.
  3. c) Emotional tears are produced in response to many feelings such as joy, sadness, and fear. 
Our eyes and our brain 
  1. Each of our eyes has a small blind spot. This is the point where the optic nerve passes through our retinas. We rarely notice this lack of visual information because our brains fill in the blind spot based on information from the other eye.
  2. Our visual cortex is the part of our brain that processes our vision. Physically, the visual cortex is at the back of the brain in the occipital lobe.
  3. As human beings vision is so important to us that it takes up more than 50% of our brain’s functionality.
At Allegro Optical we love eyes! Millions of years of evolution have made our eyes one of the most interesting and complex components of our bodies. Our eyes are truly a miracle of nature, this is why it is important to keep them healthy with regular eye exams. If it has been a while since you have had your eyes examined, contact us to arrange an appointment or call Greenfield 01457 353100 or Meltham 01484 907090

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