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How Does the Human Eye Work?

How Does the Human Eye Work? How Does the Human Eye Work?

Reflection and Perception

You are able to see images because light from the environment bounces off the object you are looking at. The light is reflected off of the object you are looking at and is then processed by the eye.

Processing

At the front of your eye are structures called the pupil, lens, cornea and iris. These structures work together to help regulate the amount of light that enters the eye and to focus the object you are looking at. The cornea picks up the light first. The pupil and iris then control the amount of light that enters the eye. Your pupil, which is a hole in the iris, changes sizes to control the light. In bright light the iris makes the pupil become smaller to limit light intake. When it is darker the iris enlarges the pupil to take in more light. After the light is controlled and focused, it next passes through the lens. Small muscles called ciliary muscles change the shape of the lens to control the image. If the object you are looking at is close, the lens becomes thicker. For objects that are far away the lens becomes thinner. The image is then sent to the retina.

Retina

Your retina, which is a section of tissue located at the back of the eye, receives the light and images from the pupil, lens, cornea and iris. Then your macula and fovia, which are located within the retina, work to fine-tune the image and create detail. After the image is fine tuned, the retina converts the light and images into electrical impulses that can be sent to the brain to interpret. At this stage the retina actually processes the images upside down.

Optical Nerve

Your optical nerves take the electrical impulses received from the retina and transmits them to the brain where the images can be processed right side up. There is a bundle of optic nerves that leave each eye and they cross before they reach the brain. The brain then combines the images you see from each eye and interprets this information so you can identify the object you are looking at.

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