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Can Side Bangs Give You Lazy Eye? (And Other Silly Eye Care Myths)

May 24, 2012

Uncovering the truth behind some of the craziest eye care rumors.

It seems as though everyone and their mother (and their mother’s mother too for that matter!) has their own century-old health and wellness secrets that have been handed down to generation after generation. And while some of these health “miracles” may actually work, the good majority of them are old wives takes that have simply gained more momentum and fuel over time.

However, when it comes to the strength and clarity of our eyes, because we are all desperate for flawless, 20/20 vision, we still try out these health and wellness secrets hoping that they are just what we need to improve our eyes for good. In fact, we will even attempt some that sounds absolutely ridiculous, such as eating a strict diet or carrots and spinach, or only sitting at least 15 feet away from the television at all times.

Like with any other myth that surrounds the world of wellness and beauty, some of these stories over time tend to grow from facts that seem interesting and plausible, to some that seem downright silly. Because of the large amount of outrageous vision myths that are still floating around, we have decided to gather some of the most popular (and strange) of the bunch and finally debunk these myths once and for all.

MYTH: Side Bangs Cause Lazy Eye

Recently in The Huffington Post, a strange and outrageous story appeared originally quoting an Australian eye doctor as saying that hair styles that feature side-swept bangs or hair covering the eyes on one side can cause lazy eye, or amblyopia. In fact, it wasn’t until this story had spread as far msnbc.com before an ophthalmologist finally put a stop to this far-fetched claim. He explained that this story would only be plausible if you had someone under the age of seven who never looked out of that eye (meaning it would need to be blocked 24/7). You would have to have this constant deprivation before it had any effect on the clarity of your vision.

MYTH: Doctors Can Transplant Whole Eyeballs

While technology has come a long way within the last decade, it is still not yet possible for any doctor in the world to make a full eye transplant. This is because our eye transmits images to our brain through the optic nerve, which contains more than a million nerve fibers that, if severed, cannot be removed. Therefore, if an eye is removed from a dead body, in the case of a full transplant, the eye would then need to be connected with the brain’s optic nerve―an achievement that our medical scientists have not been able to achieve thus far.

MYTH: Marijuana Cures Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease resulting from serious optic nerve damage. Abnormally high intra-ocular pressure frequently causes the optic nerve damage associated with glaucoma. Medical research has shown that a prominent chemical in marijuana, cannabinoid, reduces intra-ocular pressure in patients with primary open angle glaucoma but no more so than glaucoma medications currently available. However, coupled with the adverse side effects of marijuana as reported by the National Institute of Health, the National Eye Institute and The American Academy of Ophthalmology do not approve of marijuana in any form as an alternative treatment for increased intraocular pressure.


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