Red, Red Eyes
I’m facing a major case of the red eyes this week.
This is what happens to me when I’m so captivated by a subject I’m reading about online that I can’t stop staring at my computer. Sometimes I’m staring because I’m really into a movie…Ahem…movie(S) back to back. 🙂
I blink less when I stare at my computer for hours.
Blinking moistens the eyes. Not blinking for long stretches of time (sometimes because of extreme focus on a screen) causes my eyes to get dry and irritated.
By the time I head to bed, I have red eyes– zombie eyes. Over the counter eye drops only give me temporary relief. My eyes always feel itchier in the long run.
Even if you don’t have red eyes, eye fatigue affects the quality of your vision. I know looking at screens is increasingly a part of every day life.
WHAT DO YOU DO?
Here are two things I do to go from red eyes to clear, white eyes
1. Use a clean shot glass or a small cup to wash eyes with cool water in the morning and night.
When most people wash their face, they automatically close their eyes so no water lubricates their eye sockets. Cool water on the eyes displaces excess heat (red eyes) built up from not blinking enough or not taking enough computer breaks.
Ayurveda is all about the lubrication of the bodily passages that come into contact with dry air. Everything should run smoothly in the body (like silk!)- the eyes included. There are more advanced lubrication strategies like cool liquid ghee (clarified butter) or castor oil in the eyes at night but most people should give water a try.
2. Rub your right hand over your left hand to create friction. Slightly warm your hands and then put them over your eyes like a cup. This is called cupping or palming.
Covering your eyes gives them an immediate break from staring. I find it easier to cover my eyes than to remind myself to look away from my computer at a picture on the wall. The slight warming does not overheat your pupils or the whites of your eyes because when you cup your hands, you touch the skin around your eyes.
Instead, the slight warming of your eyelids, increases circulation. This practice improves circulation of the vitreous humour, the clear gel that fills the space between the lens and the retina of the eyeball, and can help dissolve crystals and improve eyesight.
In service to your beautiful eyes, I’m ending here today to give them a break. Your eyes are one of your most distinctive features. Learn how to give them some love, too. Consider eye cupping today and an eyewash tonight.
If your eyes are super dry no matter what you do, evaluate your daily water intake.