Reasons Why Your Eyes Are Important
12 September 2019
Reading the title of this blog, we wouldn’t blame you if the first thing that came to mind was “to see, obviously!”
But on the contrary, there are a number of reasons that you possibly never considered as to why our eyes are so important. The human body has 5 senses: sight, touch, hearing, taste, and smell. According to a Tellwut survey of over 2000 participants, 61% agreed that out of the 5 senses, they could not give up their sight. Over 70% of adults claimed that losing their eyesight would have the greatest impact on everyday life.
Around 80% of the information from our surrounding environment that reaches our brains comes from our eyes. The visual cortex is located at the back of the brain and is the primary section that receives, integrates, and processes visual information that the retina of the eye transmits. Research has shown that there is an extensive connection between the amygdala and visual cortex.
The amygdala plays a key role in processing emotions, memories, and motivation by receiving information from the senses. The amygdala will then process this and tell the body to react with an appropriate response.
For example, when we see a spider it is quite common for us to feel fear and jump. If you were gifted with a present, you may react to show admiration, love, and affection towards the person. If we didn’t have our eyes, it would be much more difficult for our brains to automatically process information and react with the correct emotion.
Our eyes and vision can be our best asset when it comes to living with a disability full time or temporary. For someone who is hard of hearing or unable to speak, it is their sight they rely on to get through daily tasks. Communicating through sign language requires your eyes to understand what the other person is signing.
People living with these types of disabilities also adapt the exceptional skill of lip reading, and what better sense to understand then sight!? Our eyes also play an essential role in keeping us away from danger especially when our other senses are disabled. If you are unable to hear a car horn, alarm sounding, or people screaming, our eyes take over to ensure we are prepared for any danger we suddenly encounter.
Eating, Drinking and Colour
Our eyes also play a crucial role in deciding if what you are about to consume tastes good or not. Taste is considered to be quite a weak sense, which is why the body also relies on sight to decide if the food or drink is to your liking, and this is achieved with colour recognition.
The average human eye can see over 7,000,000 colours, which comes in handy when deciding if something is pleasant as we naturally affiliate colours with flavour. For example, the colour red is considered to be the sweetest of all the colours and your vision may sometimes outweigh your decision over your actual tastebuds.
This theory was proved when a study was conducted on 54 oenology (wine science) students. The teacher gave a batch of white wine and a batch of red wine for the participants to analyse, however unbeknownst to the students, both batches were actually white wine and the teacher applied red die in one to give the illusion it was red wine.
The feedback the students gave indicated that they had no idea that it was white wine and any they described were red characteristics such as "raspberry," "cherry," "cedar," and "chicory."
Statistics show that in the UK alone, 250 people will begin to lose their sight every day. 1 in 5 will have to live with sight loss during their lifetime yet, more than 80% of vision impairments are curable or preventable. This is why it is crucial to get your eye test every 2 years:
- It can detect life-threatening diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and cardiovascular problems, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease, and tumours
- Your prescription may be changing and need to seek out visual aid.
- Catch early signs of cataracts developing
- Measure overall health of your eyes and administer treatment if needed
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