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Can You Keep Your Eyes Open While You Sneeze?

Yes, it's possible to sneeze with your eyes open, but you you'd probably have to hold them open by force. There are intricate connections between your eyes and nose, and stimulation to one often causes a reaction in the other. And even with spray forces at about 120 mile per hour (about 193 kph), sneezing with your eyes open will not cause them to pop out.

Facts you can't sneeze at:

  • Scientists have estimated the wind speed of sneezes to somewhere around 100 mph (about 161 kph).

  • In addition to spreading disease, sneezes can be dangerous to a person's health by causing whiplash, cracked ribs, spinal injuries and even brain hemorrhages.

  • You cannot sneeze while you are sleeping. During REM sleep, your body shuts down various neurotransmitters that without stimulation cannot send sneeze messages to the brain. You can, however, be awoken by annoyances and then sneeze.

  • You cannot prevent pregnancy by sneezing after sex &emdash; that's an urban legend.

  • Saying "bless you" after a sneeze has religious roots in a belief that your soul left your body when you sneezed; it also may be rooted to the times of plague, where sneezing was a symptom of the fatal disease and people would say bless you in hopes the person wasn't ill.

  • Your heart doesn't stop when you sneeze. Your blood pressure changes, which may alter your heart rate, but all systems continue to function.
Discussion Comments
By anon267811 — On May 11, 2012

"Bless you" is short form of "May God bless you". It got shortened as the word "God" is disliked by societies now a days.

Muslims say "Alhamdulillah" (all praise to God) after sneezing, as God made our body and systems perfect.

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