A lot of people go to the gym because they understand that exercising their muscles are an important part of staying healthy. What most people do not think about is that their eyes have muscles and exercising their eye muscles is just as important to maintaining good vision as normal exercise is for maintaining regular body health. With today’s practices of staring for long periods of time at a computer screen, cell phone screen, or even television, maintaining good eye health has become more important than ever. The effects of eye strain related issues have also never been more prevalent.

We have all felt that our “eyes are tired” or experienced headaches after a long day of work. As recent study has shown that 50% to 90% of office workers have eye strain arising from issues such as eye-twitching, headaches, fatigue and red eyes.

By exercising our eye, we can help eliminates these symptoms and possibly even help to reduce the chance of glaucoma. Glaucoma is usually caused by high pressure in the eyes and performing some of these exercises may help to relieve that pressure.

One of the first exercises is not really an exercise, but the transfer of heat. Sore muscles feel good when they are heated, right? Your eyes are no different.

Begin by rubbing your palms together rapidly to warm them up. Then place them over your eyes. You should feel your eyes relax as the heat is transferring. You should perform this heat transfer at least two to three times.

The next exercise is to blink your eyes rapidly 10 to 15 times. After you have done that close your eyes and relax for 15 to 20 seconds, then repeat 10 to 15 blinks again. You should practice this exercise 4 to 5 times.

Another exercise involves rotating your eyes from one direction to the other. You begin by looking to one corner of your eyes and then rotating your gaze to the opposite direction. This helps improve blood flow within the eye, which can help the tiny muscles in your eye to become healthier and more active.

The next exercise involves making your vision “zoom”. Zooming involves making a shift in your focus to make your eyes react. This can be accomplished simply by holding an object like a pencil, or even just focusing on your finger-tip, and moving that object back and forward in front (farther and closer) to your face.

The final exercise is to look at the floor or a wall and use your eyes to trace a figure eight. You can even take a piece of paper and draw a figure eight on it, then place it on the ground or tape it to the wall to make it easier to trace out the figure eight. You should trace the figure eight for around 30 seconds, and then switch to the other direction.

These simple eye exercises can help relieve and prevent the symptoms of eye strain. Unfortunately, they cannot cure common eye conditions like myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism. Additionally, these exercises provide little benefit for those suffering from age-related eye degeneration or cataracts.

If you’d like to set up an appointment with an optometrist in Centralia, call Innovations in Eyecare today at (360) 736-7385