why do our eyes water when we yawn

When you see someone yawn, you might yawn too and something else may also happen. You might shed a tear or two. When we yawn, the facial muscles surrounding our eyes pull tight. This may put pressure on our
(the glands that are neatly tucked away deep beneath our upper eyelids just below our eyebrow bones. ) These glands produce the watery component to our eyes' own natural tears. They are working to produce and release tears slowly throughout the day to coat the surface of our eyes at all times, not just when we cry (think about it, that is why our eyes always look so glossy. ) When the facial muscles tighten during a yawn, causing them to release a small amount of tears that they were storing to release later.


So the next time you let out a big yawn (hopefully it didn't happen already while reading this), pay attention to the muscles around your eyes to feel them tighten and then make note whether or not you get a little teary eyed.


It's not sad, it's just science. The tear film has three layers. The bottom layer is called mucin and acts very much like a glue to keep the tears from simply rolling off your eyes. The middle layer is the aqueous and is mostly salt water. The outermost layer is the lipid and is oily.


The lipid oil keeps the tears from immediately evaporating. The tear fluids are created in small glands around your eyes and flow down tiny channels. You also have a tear drainage system called the punctum. You have one punctum in each upper and lower eyelid near the nose. These drain into the nasal cavity. In a healthy eye, tear fluids are constantly being produced, taken down channels to the eyes, lubricate and wash the eyes, and then drained out the punctum.


When you yawn, you stretch the glands, channels, and punctum. Closing the punctum cause an overflow of tears, which will then roll down your cheeks. Squeezing the channels can squirt out all the fluid to the eyes, like too much mustard on a hot dog. Closing your eyes tightly can squeeze the tears already on the eye. This combination can produce tears when you yawn.

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