woman looking up toward the sun

Even if your vision is 20/20, what you know about eye health may be a bit fuzzy. Were you ever told that sitting too close to the television or reading in the dark could hurt your eyes? These vision myths are common, but they’re more folklore than fact. Let us clear things up by debunking some of the myths and uncovering the reality behind them:

1. Myth: Reading in dim lighting can hurt your eyes.

Reality: Just as listening to a whisper won’t hurt your hearing, reading in the dark won’t damage your eyes. Reading in the dark is more difficult and requires more focus than reading with full lighting, but its only effect is temporary eye fatigue. While the strain may be uncomfortable, it won’t have any lasting impact on your eyes.

2. Myth: Taking off your glasses gives your eyes a chance to rest.

Reality: Since your glasses are an aid for your eyesight, they help rather than hurt your eyes, and you don’t need to rest from them. On the contrary, attempting to see without your prescription glasses can cause eye strain and fatigue. If you find that using your glasses makes your eyes tired or sore, you may have a poor prescription, and you should schedule an appointment with your eye doctor.

3. Myth: Sitting too close to the television is bad for your eyes.

Reality: Looking closely at a television screen won’t hurt your eyes, though it may cause eye fatigue if you stare at it for long periods. You’re free to sit as close as you want to your television; however, if you need to sit right in front of the screen in order to see, your vision may be declining. Contact your doctor and schedule an eye exam to be sure.

4. Myth: Vision loss is not preventable.

Reality: Vision loss is not an inevitable part of aging. Many causes of deteriorating vision are preventable, and taking simple steps to protect your eyes and promote your overall health can save your vision. Use sunglasses, quit smoking, eat right, and schedule regular eye exams to prevent vision loss and boost your eye health.

5. Myth: Staring at a computer too long will damage your eyes.

Reality: Just as reading in dim light can strain your eyes, so can reading in the bright glare of a computer screen. The light doesn’t damage your eyes or your eyesight, but it does cause eye fatigue. The best solution is to take breaks from looking at your computer screen and to decrease the brightness and glare of the screen.

When it comes to your eye health, make sure you get your facts straight. Don’t base your eye care on myth. Meet with your eye doctor regularly and protect your eyes so you can maintain your eye health as you age.