As you stare at an optical illusion you may wonder if your eyes are playing tricks on you. Optical illusions, however, don’t trick your eyes; they trick our brains. Our eyes are only one part of the visual system which is composed of the optic nerve and the visual cortex of the brain, just to name a few. When light enters our eyes and is focused onto the retina. The cells of the retina turn light into an electrical signal that travels through the optic nerve and into the brain. It is in the visual cortex of the brain that interprets this signal into an image in our mind. So it is actually the brain that “sees”. This process only takes 1/10 of a second! Throughout the day our eyes take in a lot of visual stimuli. The brain at times take shortcuts and fill in gaps for creating an image based on past experiences. Optical illusions take advantage of these shortcuts and fool our brains so that our perception of an image may not necessarily match the reality. It is easy to be fooled by optical illusions, but as your eye care providers, we at Bright Eyes Vision will make certain you will never be fooled by your eyes. If there’s anything you can learn from optical illusions is that things aren’t always as they seem. The same goes with your visual health.