How Our Eyes Work When We Sleep

The average hours that we spend sleeping in a year is 2,920 hours which means it is about a third of our lives. People are wondering what our eyes do when we close them when we are done for the day. It may feel that we are unresponsive and doing nothing but the truth is, our brain and eyes are very active when we are sleeping.

Once you close your eyes, it still functions because it can sense light. Since our eyes can sense light, the sun rising in the morning or the bright light that is being switched in your room can wake you up. Turning the lights off before you go to bed can help you sleep.

You need to know that there is no visual data or information that is being sent to the brain when you are sleeping. The truth is when you wake up, it takes almost 30 seconds for your eyes and brain to reboot the connection they have. It explains why we are having trouble seeing clearly when we first wake up.

how our eyes work when we sleep

What Is Rapid Eye Movement or REM Sleep?

We are aware that our muscles are paralyzed when we are sleeping but our eyes continually move which is known to be REM (Rapid Eye Movement). There are five phases of sleep which consist of 4 stages and when combined are called the Non-REM.

REM is an eye movement that is also known to be saccades which refer to the fastest movements that are produced by our body because it reaches an angular speed of 900 degrees per second. The cause of why our eyes move when we are in REM Sleep is not entirely known. However, some studies suggested that our eyes follow images in our dreams.

how our eyes work when we sleep

The Effect of Sleep Deprivation in Your Eyes

A study conducted by CDC revealed that there are 40 million workers in America who only get less than six hours of sleep per night. Being sleep-deprived is known to affect reaction time and concentration. It is not well known that our eyesight is affected by sleep deprivation. Our eyes work to replenish when we are sleeping which will take at least five hours of sleep to do so.

Eye spasms or myokymia, popped blood vessels, swelling of the optic nerve or Papilledema, and dry eyes can occur when you did not get enough sleep. For your overall health as well as your eye’s health, get enough sleep. You should be able to get 7 to 9 hours if you are an adult while 10 to 11 hours for kids.

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