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Sharp Health News

Anatomy 101: your eyes (infographic)

Jan. 18, 2018

How many songs do you know about eyes? Private, lyin', hungry — the list is endless. But aside from being a musician's muse, eyes are complex organs that function, well, beautifully. We asked Dr. Jennifer Tam, an optometrist with Sharp Rees-Stealy, to tell us how they work.

Anatomy 101: your eyes (infographic). Working in tandem with your brain, your eyes capture and display the world around you - much like a complex camera. Here's how the magic happens. Elaborate organs. Each eye is about the size of a Ping-Pong ball, and is composed of more than 2 million working parts. The most notable are: Sclera: White supporting wall of the eye. Iris: Pigmented segment that controls the pupil. Cornea: Glassy surface that helps focus light. Pupil: Dark center that collects the light. Lens: Flexible layer that adjusts for distance. Retina: Light-sensitive tissue lining the back of the eye that sends signals to the optic nerve. Optic nerve: Connects the eye to the brain. Eyes + brain = vision. The eyes' main job is to detect patterns of light. But it's your brain's job to turn those patterns into images. 1. Light reflects off objects and travels to your eyes. 2. Light passes through the cornea, pupil and lens. 3. The cornea and lens bend light to focus on the retina. 4. The retina converts light into electrical impulses. 5. Electrical impulses pass along the optic nerve to the brain. 6. The brain processes signals to create an image. A series of safeguards. As fragile and important as they are, your eyes are protected by a biological army, including: Tears to protect against irritants. Deep sockets to protect against injury. Eyelashes/eyelids to protect against dust. Eyebrows to protect against sweat. Blinking to protect against dryness. Eye health checklist. Help keep your eyes happy and healthy by following these simple steps: Eat leafy greens and foods with omega-3 fatty acids. Wear sunglasses. Take breaks from screens. Know your family's eye health history. Don't smoke. Have regular eye exams. From the expert.

View the printable version of this infographic.

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