give more benefit to the body than just shutting out the light. Ever wonder just why it feels so good to have a little weight on your eyelids?
Eye pillows help to regulate your nervous system, mood, digestion, and heart. These pillows do this through their light seed weight with the help of softly textured fabric to penetrate a nerve below the surface called the vagus nerve.
Written in 2018 by the Frontiers in Psychiatry of the NCBI,“The vagus nerve represents the main component of the parasympathetic nervous system, which oversees a vast array of crucial bodily functions, including control of mood, immune response, digestion, and heart rate. It establishes one of the connections between the brain and the gastrointestinal tract and sends information about the state of the inner organs to the brain.”
This cranial nerve responds to the light acupuncture pressure resting on your eyelids and sends a message down the back of your neck to your chest and heart. From there, the message is then sent to your nervous system or abdomen. The message is one of relaxation and pleasure.
The Oculocardiac Reflex
Stimulating the vagus nerve, the light pressure on your eyes triggers a reflex that lowers your heart rate and regulates your mood. This oculocardiac reflex puts your body and mind at rest and allows you to enjoy your deepest sweetest nights of sleep.
Enabling Facial Relaxation & Stillness
Cutting out visual stimulus, including light, sends a message to your brain that it’s time for your mind to be still. Those racing thoughts can be tamed with the simple technique of resting with an eye pillow on your eyelids for 10 minutes before bed. As the vagus nerve is stimulated, the mind becomes still with the received message to‘just let it flow.’
Relaxation is enabled through the perfect amount of pressure applied to your eyes, transmitting into the rest of the muscles in your face and even into your shoulders. It’s almost as if this neurological signal gives your body and mind permission to relax.
It’s incredible how hard it is for us to relax, be still, and sometimes even sleep. Training ourselves to continue productivity past our limits is unhealthy and also trains the body and mind to react negatively to stillness. Using an eye pillow for 10 minutes each day, preferably during savasana or before bed, can aid in training yourself back to what is instinctually needed for your own personal survival and happiness.