Why do our eyes get Closed while sneezing?

Why do our eyes get Closed while sneezing?

Why Can’t We Keep Our Eyes Open When We Sneeze?

A sneeze is a common term for what happens when your respiratory system expels unwanted particles from the nose, typically preceded by some sort of irritation or inflammation.

How eyelids are affected?

When stimulated, the brain stem's sneeze center orders muscle contractions from the esophagus to sphincter. That includes the muscles controlling the eyelids. Some sneezers even shed a few tears.
The body works to rid its airways by sneezing when it detects irritating particles within the nose, Huston said.

Can you sneeze with your eyes open?

David Huston, MD, associate dean of the Texas A&M College of medicine Houston campus and an allergist at Houston Methodist Hospital, said it's "absolutely possible" to sneeze without closing the eyes, but most of the people tend to automatically close their eyes when sneezing. It is an autonomic reflex, which is an unconscious motor action in response to a stimulus.

Why do our eyes get Closed while sneezing?

Why do our eyes get closed while sneezing?

By automatically closing the eyelids when a sneeze happens, more irritants can probably be prevented from coming into and aggravating the eyes. If they're so inclined, people can try and keep their eyes open during a sneeze.

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Moreover, they don't have to worry about their eyeballs popping out, a tall tale that has no scientific merit, he said. This allegedly happened in 1882, according to a New York Times article about a woman who was said to have dislocated an eyeball after a fit of severe sneezing.

Pressure released from a sneeze is extremely unlikely to cause an eyeball to come out although your eyes are open. Increased pressure from straining builds up within the blood vessels, not the eyes or muscles surrounding the eyes.


With cold and flu season in full force, there are a variety of methods to guard others against the germs spewed when sneezing.

Huston said: “Although you'll be able to focus to keep your eyes open once sneezing, your body's blinking response is probably going there to safeguard itself from germs."