Can anxiety cause eye pain

Can anxiety cause eye pain?

Anxiety can affect any and every part of your body from your heart right through to you digestive system and unfortunately your eyes too.

Eye pain may have many causes so it is always wise to report any new symptom to your doctor to ensure that you are not suffering from a serious life threatening illness that may only be causing symptoms of eye pain.

The eye pain associated with anxiety is usually a sign of an approaching migraine, another unpleasant effect of anxiety. You will probably feel a pulsating pain around your one eye that will radiated towards your temple. This eye pain usually affects only the one eye and the migraine associated with it usually only affects the one side of your head. Most of us have experienced a headache at least once in our lives and we all know how difficult it is to even think straight if your head feels like it is caught in a vice grip. The eye pain and migraine associated with anxiety is even more severe than your common headache, and it may even cause you to become nauseous and vomit.

There are many things that can trigger a migraine with its associated eye-pain and many of these triggers are offset by anxiety. If you feel over tired from not sleeping well it can easily trigger a migraine. Who does not know that anxiety can cause you to lie awake at night with worry? The bad news is that that cup of coffee you grab first thing in the morning, to wake you up from not sleeping well, can further increase your chances of developing the unpleasant eye pain followed by a migraine.

You can of course try to treat the eye pain and migraine, but until you have addressed the anxiety which causes it, these symptoms will come back again and again. Anxiety is the real problem and the eye pain and the migraine are only signs pointing to the problem.

Anxiety usually develops over time, and because of this it may take time to treat it. The good news is that there are many people who have overcome anxiety and if they could beat it you can too. Breathing and relaxation exercises may relieve everyday stress that if left unaddressed can cause anxiousness. If you are in need of some extra help consider aromatherapy massages or reflexology to help you relax.

Changes in your diet can not only help to reduce your stress levels but may even help with getting the eye pain and migraine under control. Cut back on caffeine and foods containing MSG. Some cheeses and cured meats may also contain nitrates that may trigger a migraine. Alcohol and chocolate are not your friends, even in times of stress, if you tend to suffer from migraines.

Choosing a better lifestyle and a change of mind may take time but you will reap the rewards of an anxiety free life.


“Headache – When to worry, what to do.” Harvard Health Publications. 2009. (October 8, 2012).

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