By Dr S.S. Gill

Ipoh Echo’s EYE HEALTH series continues with Consultant Eye Surgeon Dr S.S. GILL talking to us about EYE FACTS & MYTHS

Myths and facts about issues surround us daily with many of them being passed on from one person to another without any confirmation of truth. In fact, you may be one of them who may be passing on these old wives’ tales unknowingly. Let’s take the blinkers off here about the common myths about eye-care.

CARROT CONSUMPTION IMPROVES VISION

Will eating carrots all day long give you bionic eyes? Actually, it’s the overall DIET that’s important. Although carrots are foods that are high in Vitamin A and does play a role in maintaining eye health, having an excess of this vitamin does not enhance vision further. Foods like spinach, broccoli and dark green leafy vegetables can also help the eyes. So, you do not have to be eating carrots like a rabbit!

YOU CAN GET DEPENDENT ON EYEGLASSES

When you are prescribed a pair of spectacles to correct your vision because you have blurred vision, excessive use does not weaken your eyes. Wearing prescription glasses allows you to see clearly and puts less strain on your eyes. It does not make you get dependent on the spectacles but rather, it just allows you to enjoy good vision.

NOTHING CAN BE DONE TO PREVENT VISION LOSS IN OLD AGE

If you experience any eye symptoms such as blurred vision, eye pain or floaters, do get professional help. There are many causes of eyesight loss or blurring vision. Most can be treated especially if detected early enough.

READING IN DIM LIGHT IS BAD

Reading in dim light does not cause permanent harm to your vision but it can cause eye fatigue that can affect you significantly. It is best to avoid reading under dim light mainly to avoid unnecessary eye fatigue. Going through the day results in enough fatigue in itself, so do the right thing in reading with proper lighting. If you do get tired, simply stop what you are doing for a while. The 20-20-20 rule is helpful – take a break every 20 minutes for about 20 seconds by looking at objects that are 20 feet away from you.

COMPUTERS DAMAGE THE EYES

When someone works on a computer, he or she tends to blink less times in one minute. This causes discomfort especially when you work with a computer for long. It is because the eye lubrication gets compromised and the person’s eyes end up feeling dry, gritty with a burning sensation. Again, the key is to take a regular break in between computer work, applying the 20-20-20 rule. Applying lubricating eye drops is helpful. Also, reducing the brightness of your monitor to a comfortable level is also key as this helps to minimise the blue light exposure that can disrupt good sleep.

DOING INTRICATE WORK WEARS OUT THE EYES

If you have weak eyes, doing fine-print reading does not make them worse. The eye is not a muscle. The eye is like a camera. Therefore, it will not wear out just because you use it to take photographs that have fine detail.