Why do you sneeze when you look into the light?

While I was studying chemistry in Organic class we came upon the shapes of molecules determines smell and how they fit into the odor receptors because of their specific geometry. So I raised my hand and asked her if that is why we sneeze when we look into the light? (I was thinking that photons particle/wave acting creatures they are may be able to almost fit into a receptor but when pushed out the sneeze occurs).

Well her expression told me she had no idea what I was referring to but to my relief several other students agreed that this was the case. I have come to realize that their is another theory on the process of smelling other than the shape or geometry of molecules. I do not remember this theory being discussed but it is based on the idea of molecules vibrating . The vibrational properties according to this theory is what allows us to smell. It also kid of supports my idea. SO my questions are and I will sum them up to one cohesive question.

  1. Is the ability or phenomenon of looking into the light to kick start or induce a sneeze universal or just for a segment of the population?
  2. If yes then what is the mechanism for this?
  3. If no why are some people able to do this either by choice or not and others don't?

I think my title question covers these questions!


Note by Alfred Thomas
3 years ago

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