Updated: Sep 13
There’s little scientific evidence suggesting that eye exercises or alternate therapy can improve vision, but they help with eyestrain and may help your eyes feel better.
If you have refractive errors, like myopia (short-sightedness), hyperopia (far-sightedness), astigmatism, or other eye diseases like cataract, glaucoma, ARMD, you probably won’t benefit from eye exercises, in terms of treatment of disease, but they definitely add to comfort and reduce eye strain.
Factors essential for eye health:
A healthy diet rich in minerals and vitamins
Vitamins A, C, and E, as well as the mineral zinc, contain antioxidants that can help the vitality of retinal cells and have been attributed to delaying the progression of refractive errors.
A good healthy diet can help further increase of glasses power, and delay cataract formation.
Food sources that are good for the eyes are any colorful vegetables and fruits, such as:
Red yellow bell peppers
Beetroot, sweet potato
Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and flaxseed, are also recommended for better eye health.
A few other micronutrients very important for eye health are lutein and zeaxanthin, which are carotenoids found in the retina. They can be found in leafy green vegetables, broccoli, zucchini, and eggs.
Eye exercises can help with eye comfort, especially if your eyes get irritated at work. But there is no scientific evidence that eye exercises can correct eyeglasses' power.
Eyeglass's power occurs due to changes in the shape of the eyeball, length of the eye, shape of the cornea, and all these physiological changes cant be altered with the help of exercises. But still, eye exercises help reduce eye strain and stress which makes the eyes feel healthy and comfortable.
How to exercise your eyes. Here are a few different types of eye exercises that you can try, depending on your needs.
Blinking is a reflex function, which does not improve eyesight but improves the quality of tear film and hence the quality of vision.
Due to continues staring at a screen the tear film dries up and hence blurred vision and sour eyes.
Blinking redistributes the tear film and makes the eyes lubricated, it also provides the eyes some much-needed rest, therefore decreasing fatigue and strain.
For 2 minutes, you must blink your eyes every 4 seconds, rapidly, for optimal benefit.
It must be performed several times during the day to achieve the best results.
2. The Figure of Eight or circular eye movements:
Imagine a large “8” figure in front of you, about six feet away, and you now revolve your eyes to trace its shape slowly in the clockwise direction a few times and then anti-clockwise direction.
Gently covering both eyes with your palms is called palming. It helps by relaxing the eyes and also distributing tears and lubricating the eye surface. Make sure your forearms and elbows are well supported, and then close your eyes. Gently cup your eyes in the hollow of your palms for about a minute, breathing normally. Experts recommend repeating several sets of this exercise, several times a day for optimal results.
4. Pencil Pushups
Convergence exercises are to strengthen your near vision muscles, and also to help delay presbyopia by exercising the muscles responsible for the accommodation. Focus on a pencil tip held an arm’s length away. Focus on something far away to relax your eyes. Repeat this cycle for two minutes.
Slowly bring the pencil tip closer until it is about 3 inches away from your face or the tip becomes blurred. Don’t take your eyes off the pencil tip and try and focus on it till it becomes clear again. Move the pencil back to its original position with your arm stretched out as much as possible. Repeat this at least ten times, and two times a day.
5. Extreme eye movement
Moving the eyes from side to side also is said to relax the eyes and improve vision. Sitting in a relaxed position, shift your eyes to the right, looking at something at least six to eight feet away, hold your gaze in that direction for a few seconds before moving your eyes to the other side. This also must be performed in multiple sets, repeated during the day for best results.