What Causes Dark Eyelids and How Are They Treated?
Dark eyes have always been associated with sadness or depression. However, there are many reasons why your eye color may appear darker than it actually is. Here’s what causes them:
1) Genetics – There are two main types of genes that determine eye color: Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) and Melanocortin 2 receptor (MCR).
MC1R is responsible for making melanin, which gives skin its color. MCR is responsible for making the pigment called luteinizing hormone (LH), which makes your follicles produce testosterone.
If either one of these genes is mutated, then the person will develop blue eyes instead of brown ones.
2) Sun Exposure – A person’s risk of developing blue eyes increases if they spend too much time outdoors.
Blue eyes are caused when sunlight damages the rods and cones in the eye, causing them to not function properly. This damage can occur from prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light, such as sunburns or tanning beds.
The rays cause DNA mutations that result in less melanin production, leading to a lack of protection against harmful UV radiation.
3) Age – As you grow older, your eyes naturally start to change color.
This is because the lens in your eyes starts to become more yellow, which changes the light that it reflects.
4) Sleep Deprivation – Without regular sleep, your body doesn’t have adequate time to repair itself.
Lack of sleep causes oxidative stress, which can damage your rods and cones, as well as other parts of the eye.
While the above causes are natural, there are also man-made causes that are worth noting. These include:
1) Smoking – There are more than 4,000 chemicals in cigarette smoke, many of which have adverse effects on your eye health.
Specifically, smoking causes a buildup of brownish spots on your eyeballs. These spots are actually flat, dark areas that cause your eyes to look darker than they really are.
2) Tanning Beds – While tanning beds may not damage your eye health like cigarettes do, they can still cause a darkening of the eyes.
This is because they put out high levels of UV rays that damage the eyes just like they do the skin.
3) Eye Injury – If you suffer an injury to your eye, there’s a good chance it will look darker than the other one.
Sources & references used in this article:
What causes dark circles under the eyes? by FM Freitag, TF Cestari – Journal of cosmetic dermatology, 2007 – Wiley Online Library
The Wills eye manual: office and emergency room diagnosis and treatment of eye disease by N Bagheri, B Wajda, C Calvo, A Durrani – 2016 – books.google.com
Successful tear lipid layer treatment for refractory dry eye in office workers by low-dose lipid application on the full-length eyelid margin by E Goto, M Dogru, K Fukagawa, M Uchino… – American journal of …, 2006 – Elsevier
Eyelid arteriovenous malformation treated with embolization leading to a branch retinal artery occlusion by J Shaver – Optometry-Journal of the American Optometric …, 2011 – Elsevier
Oral and Maxillofacial Medicine-E-Book: The Basis of Diagnosis and Treatment by C Scully – 2012 – books.google.com