- By: Dr. Amit Gupta
Rubbing Your Eyes is a Bad Idea
You may rub your eyes due to an infection or allergy. Or you may do it out of habit or reflex.
Whatever be the reason, the bottom line is - rubbing your eyes is damaging. Rubbing your eyes constantly or too aggressively can potentially damage the cornea (lens of the eyes). This further leads to an impaired vision or infection that would require medical attention.
Who are the People More Likely to Rub their Eyes?
Children, people who use computers and other digital gadgets, and those working in banks tend to rub their eyes quite often.
But Why do We Rub Our Eyes?
You may rub your eyes because of some irritation, strain or pain. Children who spend a large portion of their time doing homework or in front of digital screens frequently rub their eyes.
Not only children, but adults who spend long hours on digital devices also find themselves engaging in frequent eye rubbing.
Health Conditions that Encourage Us to Rub our Eyes
Keeping aside the above reasons, listed below are health conditions that makes your eyes itchy and cause you to rub your eyes more and more -
1. Allergies - If you have an allergy or your eyes get exposed to allergens (allergy causing substances), your eyes tend to get itchy and you end up rubbing your eyes for relief.
2. Conjunctivitis/Eye Infection - When a virus/bacteria that has been sitting on your fingers gets transmitted to your eyes when you touch them, it results in Conjunctivitis/Pink Eye. This eye infection makes your eyes itchy.
3. Dry Eyes - When your eyes aren't producing enough tears they become dry and itchy.
4. Eye Strain - When your eyes spend a lot of time looking at something, they become tired. Further resulting in a burning and itchy sensation.
5. Other Reasons - The common cold, sinus, contact lenses or the presence of unknown objects in your eyes could be a reason why your eyes become itchy.
If you or someone you know is experiencing the following symptoms, an eye checkup is a must-
1. Eye Pain
2. Light Sensitivity
3. Reduced and Blurry Vision
4. Redness or Inflammation
Asking someone to stop rubbing their eyes is always easier said than done. Instead of constantly notifying them to stop rubbing their eyes, you must ask them to rush to an eye specialist and get their eyes checked.
Tips to Prevent Yourself from Rubbing Your Eyes
Having said the above, there are certain ways you can put a stop to rubbing your eyes. These include -
1. Saline or Eye Drops - You can use these to flush away any dirt that is the cause of irritation and itching.
2. Medication - If you have conjunctivitis or allergies, take medication as prescribed by your doctor.
3. Cold Compress - Works best to relieve your eyes from any kind of irritation.
If you're in the habit of rubbing your eyes or doing it out of reflex, you should try hard to resist the urge of rubbing your eyes and keep your hands busy.