Have you ever been so engrossed in something that you just forget to blink? It happens to the best of us, but what are the consequences of not blinking for an extended period of time? Read on to find out.
Before we dive into what happens when we don’t blink, let’s go over some basics. Blinking is an automatic function that helps keep our eyes moist and free from irritants. On average, humans blink about 15 times per minute, which adds up to approximately 28, 800 blinks per day.
Each blink lasts about a tenth of a second and allows our eyelids to spread tears evenly across the surface of our eyes. Tears help lubricate the eyes and protect them from germs and foreign bodies.
Now that we’ve got some background information, let’s take a look at what happens when we neglect this crucial bodily function.
The Dreadful Dryness
The most immediate consequence of not blinking is dryness in the eye. Without regular lubrication from tears, your eyes become dry, itchy and irritated making it difficult to concentrate on anything else but finding relief for sore parched peepers!
This unpleasant sensation can continue even after you start blinking again since your tear ducts may take time to produce enough moisture for rehydration.
A Foggy Vision
Another consequence is difficulty seeing clearly or focusing due to foggy vision – another effect caused by lack of hydration in the eyes! This makes engaging in activities like reading small text more taxing than usual!
This situation might result due to ‘tear film breakup, ‘ a condition where layers between mucin secreted by Goblet cells in conjunctiva; aqueous fluid responsible for washing away impurities; & lipid-producing glands that prevents evaporation get dismantled, causing vision issues.
Infection Invaders Attack
Did you know that blinking helps wash away germs and dirt from the surface of our eyes? Without regular blinking, we make ourselves more susceptible to eye infections. Furthermore, these infections can lead to irritation and inflammation which cause discomfort or worse halt daily tasks.
The least harmful yet uncomfortable among these include Pink Eye, Redness while conjunctivitis is contagious! Such preventable irritations would often require you oftentimes treatments such as antibiotic drops to cure.
The Effects of Computer Staring & Other Screens’ Engagements
In today’s world where computers screens are omnipresent- in offices & even households; it’s only fair to be concerned about the potential effects brought on by prolonged screen time.
Staring at the computer screen for long without even taking a second glance off the device reduces blink rate causing further dryness in already fragile eyes. This also leads to eyestrain/headache making rest impossible!
But hope still remains; Ensure your working conditions are comfortable- adjust lighting & position your view accordingly! Most importantly Take breaks every 20 minutes ane focus on an object far off in distance!
Other ways to reduce chances of suffering from bad effects caused by continuous glare staring could be through investing in blue-light glasses with frequency-enhancing properties or via getting anti-glare screen protectors for devices.
Q: How long can I go without blinking?
A: Technically speaking, humans can go up to several minutes without blinking – but doing so, especially over extended periods , has negative consequences for one’s eye health.
Q: What can I do if my eyes feel dry?
A: If your eyes feel dry make sure that you blink more frequently or use artificial tear products available over-the-counter at pharmacies/your doctor’s office. Make sure you take frequent breaks during any activity that requires prolonged visual stimulation.
It’s easy to overlook the importance of blinking until we suffer the consequences of not doing so. The least severe side effect being temporary discomfort while likelihoods of a worse scenario persist if one continues practicing unhealthy habits- some avoidable with more diligence. Prioritize eye care and make sure to give them rest whenever required!