Rubbing one's eyes is a fairly natural reaction to have in response to the eyes itching or being painful, but it's not a safe reaction. There's a reason why eye doctors always recommend that you not rub your eyes as part of your daily eye care. If you regularly rub your eyes and don't know why you should stop, then read this guide to find out.
Eye pressure is a serious thing. The eye is under a precise level of pressure that allows all the parts of the eyes to function the way that they should. But when you rub on your eyes, you typically increase this pressure dramatically. It's only over a short period of time, so the negative effects won't start right away, but in the long run you could be significantly hurting yourself.
Effects of Pressure
Too much eye pressure can cause a lot of problems for vision. In the short-term, it causes blurry vision, which you may have noticed for a few brief moments each time after you rub your eyes. However, it also does a lot more than that.
Too much pressure in the eyes can lead to conditions like glaucoma down the road. While increased eye pressure is typically due to health concerns like diabetes or high blood pressure, it's not impossible for too much external pressure to cause the same concern.
What to Do If You've Been Rubbing
There are a few things you should consider doing if you regularly rub your eyes. Needless to say, the first is to stop rubbing. If your eyelids are itchy, it's okay to gently run your finger along the eyelid so long as your hands are clean. But never press down to the point where you can feel your eyeball or your eyeball can feel your hand, respectively.
In addition, it's a good idea to visit with an eye doctor to ensure that damage hasn't already been done to your eyes. Most eye examinations are completely painless and brief, so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by being examined. If damage is found in your eyes, your eye doctor will be able to help you by treating it and giving you more advice on what to avoid in the future.
Eye pressure is something that shouldn't be meddled with, and unfortunately, just because you don't know about it doesn't mean that it won't hurt you. Now that you know, stop rubbing your eyes right away and visit with an eye doctor.