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Can Stress Cause Blurred Vision

Ways To Reduce Stress

CAN ANXIETY CAUSE VISION PROBLEMS?

Taking some time to unwind is vitally important if youre feelingstressed out. Consider deep breathing routines, exercise, yoga or meditation asways to relieve stress in your life. Moreover, you can try and isolate theproblem that is causing you stress and if possible, try to resolve thatproblem. Other ways to destress include:

  • Taking a warm bath, preferably with Epsom salts
  • Going for a walk

Experiencing Blurred Vision Or Lack Of Focus From Stress

Here I would encourage you to think about the effects of high-blood pressure on the eyes.

If you have ever had your eyes dilated, the optometrist can see the effects of high-blood pressure on the eyes. If you have been stressed, you might find that your blood pressure is up as well, although, it doesnt have to be for you to experience blurred vision.

This is one of the areas where I would have a lower threshold to getting it checked out by a professional since blurred vision can be a result of many other things.

My husband is allergic to peanut butter. One day, he was working on some financial stuff.

He noticed that he started having trouble reading the numbers.

When he looked at a series of numbers , he could only make out the 1 and 2 and 5 and 6 when looking directly at the number.

His vision was significantly impaired directly at the normal focus level of his eye. Of course, he freaked out.

He later discovered that the kids had made themselves peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and used the same knife. Inadvertently, they had put peanut butter in the jelly jar.

When my husband made himself some toast with the jelly, he experienced some level of temporary blindness, but it was only for a certain focal width / range.

It was a scary experience.

So, you may want to think about what things you have been eating / drinking. Could this have had an impact on your vision?

How To Prevent Visual Problems Caused By Anxiety

Preventing visual problems caused by anxiety is usually a matter of preventing the anxiety itself. However, there are also things you’ll want to avoid during your anxiety attack to decrease the likelihood of these symptoms occurring.

  • Drink Lots of Water Drinking water will help keep you hydrated and prevent your body from being additionally taxed by the anxiety attack.
  • Turn off the Lights Too much visual stimulus can make the visual problems that accompany anxiety more severe. Helping you eyes calm down and stop overreacting will have the added benefit of helping you calm down.
  • Sit/Lie Down When you feel yourself getting anxious and you know visual problems may crop up, it’s best not to be doing anything that requires visual acuity. If you happen to be driving, this means pull over. Being in the middle of something when you get anxious can have the effect of making you more anxious about how it is affecting what you are doing, which can subsequently worsen your vision. Also, getting plenty of rest and relaxing or meditating in a sitting position once a day can make you calmer overall and decrease the frequency of you anxiety attacks.
  • No Caffeine Put down that soda or coffee you were working on, and if possible avoid caffeinated beverages altogether. Caffeine just increases your heart rate and puts additional pressure on your system. Do yourself a favor and stick to decaf coffee, sodas and teas.

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How Can Stress Affect Your Eyesight

Wednesday 6th November 2019 is National Stress Awareness Day, creating a great reminder to take a moment to think about your wellbeing and finding ways to manage stress. This can be incredibly important because chronic stress can have a negative impact on your body, and your eyes are no exception.

When you experience stress, your body will follow a fight or flight response and will react in a number of different ways.

Does Stress Play A Part In Vision Problems

Blurred Vision
  • Richard Lee and Jessica Caswell, 05/04/2018 12:00 am

Your eyes hurt and youre sometimes having trouble seeing in the evenings after you finish work. Theres been a lot going on, but you feel pretty good excluding your eyes. You think it might be a good idea to see your eye doctor, but could it just be stress? Find out.

Explaining the Physical Effect of Stress on Your Body

Stress is a natural response to a threat in your immediate environment. Before modern society, that meant something dangerous like a wild animal or a hostile neighboring tribe. Today it means demanding work projects, financial insecurity, relationship problems, or a big life change, like moving to a new city.

Unfortunately for us, the same physical processes are initiated when we experience these non-physical forms of stress. During fight-or-flight moments, adrenaline increases our heart rate, boosts our metabolism, and dilates our pupils, all to improve our ability to respond quickly in a moment of need. But not only are these effects mostly unnecessary for most of us, when they go unused for long periods they physically wear down your health. This has specific consequences for the health of your eyes.

Eye Conditions That May Be Caused by Stress

Stress typically causes these temporary eye problems. As always be sure to see your eye doctor if any issues with your eyes persist longer than two weeks.

Reducing Your Stress with Some Helpful Tips

– Sleep at least 8 hours a night

– Spend time in nature

Recommended Reading: How To Manage Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Light Sensitive Eyes Anxiety Or Stress Producing Eye Light Sensitivity

If you are suffering from light sensitivity, it could be due to an infection, or if you have been indoors or in a dim environment for a while this is pretty normal.

Some migraine sufferers say that this is what they experience when they are experiencing the onset of a migraine.

But you can also experience this is your are super stressed or experiencing a bout with anxiety. Consider that during these times, most of your muscles are tense. Your body is on high-alert and ready, so in the amped state your pupils are dilated and ready for anything.

If you suddenly go outside during this type of scenario, it is quite common to experience sensitivity to light.

For these moments, its a good idea to have sunglasses on hand or change your plans so you can accommodate the body sensations you are experiencing.

A friend of mine who suffers from anxiety told me that the biggest thing that helps him during these moments is to look at it as a wave of emotion and that the wave will soon move on.

Realizing that it isnt permanent helps him relax and let the stress go.

Blurry Vision And Central Serous Retinopathy

Blurry vision is a common symptom of CSR because the condition often affects the macula, the central part of the retina responsible for sharp, straight-ahead vision.

As fluid builds up underneath the macula, it can create a small, blister-like swelling which separates it from the retina.1 If the fluid builds up underneath the macula, you could experience blurred vision when doing things like reading, or using your smart phone this is because the macula is responsible for distinguishing fine details.4

Sometimes, fluid does not build up under the macula, and if this is the case, you may not experience any blurred vision at all.4 An optometrist will need to examine your eye, in either case, to identify whether you have central serous retinopathy.

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What Is The Relationship Between Your Eyes And Anxiety

Eye anxiety is what people search for in their attempt to describe a situation, in which it feels like anxiety is having an impact on their eye health or at least they are experiencing one of the following temporary , semi-permanent or recurring conditions of the eye.

Typical symptoms include the following:

  • Blurred vision as if you should be wearing glasses or your prescription suddenly changed
  • Floaters dots, squiggly lines, odd shapes, blotches, rings, or circles seen in bright light or when eyes are closed.
  • Eye flashes may seem like a flash of lightning seen out of corner of eye.
  • Eye strain your eyes feel like you have been reading at the computer for excessive amounts of time
  • Eye twitch a muscle twitch in your eye that last for a while and wont go away
  • Watery eyes like youve been crying or people might ask you if you have, you may have to remove your glasses to wipe them occasionally
  • Dry eyes this feels a bit like eye strain mentioned above, but its a burning feeling
  • Light Sensitivity The feeling you as if the light were significantly dialed up and your eyes have a hard time adjusting.

The problem is that it is often hard to distinguish a temporary problem from something serious.

Its kind of like sore joints, tendons and muscles surrounding a sprain versus a broken bone.

What Exactly Is Blurred Vision

Can Xanax cause blurred vision?

Blurry, unclear, unfocused vision is the most common eyesight problem, and usually it isnt anything major to worry about it. Blurriness could just be a sign that your glasses or contacts prescription needs updating. Every once in a while though, fuzzy vision signals something more serious.

Always investigate whats causing your blurry vision. Knowing the reason behind it can be the difference between experiencing the world in all its dimensions or not. Sight is such a valued sense, but there are still a lot of problems that fall through the cracks, says Rajiv Shah, MD, assistant professor of ophthalmology at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

Read Also: What Is The Best Way To Manage Stress

You Have An Eye Infection

You dont have to wear contact lenses to get eye infections that damage the cornea.

Herpes keratitis is an infection in the eye caused by the herpes virus. You can get it just by touching a cold sore on your lips then touching your eyes. Bacteria and fungi that muscle their way in after an eye injury can also cause infection.

Treatments like eye drops and medications usually help, but the best method of protection from eye infections is prevention. Your cornea will do a lot of that work for you. The cornea is an amazing structure, says Bibiana Reiser, MD, assistant professor of ophthalmology at the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California and director of cornea and glaucoma services at Childrens Hospital of Los Angeles. It has a lot of that kill things directly on contact.

What Causes Blurred Vision

Blurred vision can be caused by eye conditions, including:

Blurred vision can also be a symptom of another medical condition, such as:

Sometimes, blurred vision can be a side effect of medicines that you may be taking.

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Could It Be Diabetes

The condition raises your risk for an eye disease called diabetic retinopathy. Over time, high blood sugar can damage the tiny blood vessels in your retina, the part of your eye that senses light. That can lead to swelling in a part of the retina called the macula, new and unwanted blood vessels growing in the eye, and bleeding inside the eye.

Along with blurry vision, diabetic eye disease may also cause:

  • âFloatingâ spots in your field of vision
  • Permanent loss of vision

Early treatment is the best way to ward off permanent damage. So protect your eyes from diabetes by getting them checked at least once a year. Learn more about the symptoms of diabetic retinopathy.

Migraines And Blurred Vision

Headache Dizziness Blurred Vision Memory Loss

Migraines will often be accompanied by blurred vision, both as a symptom and factor of the neurological condition. For people who experience migraines as a pain event of the head, blurry or patch vision is often a result of the tension that is formed throughout the facial muscles. Rest and darkness will frequently help to alleviate both factors of the condition, as will medications that can reduce nerve inflammation or lessen the muscle tension and spasms.

Some migraines are an actual visual event, and are not necessarily accompanied by pain. Ocular migraines often result in patchy vision that is similar to looking through a clear kaleidoscope, and can also generate feelings of dizziness, mild nausea, and disorientation. This condition can sometimes be remedied by medications that are also used to counteract anxiety or that are used to treat neurological conditions. Rest and relaxation are also recommended for these occurrences of blurred vision.

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You Have High Blood Sugar

Even before the long-term complications of diabetes settle in, high blood sugar can cause your vision to blur. Really high sugars can lead to swelling of ones lens, says Dr. Shah. The swelling changes the shape of the eye and how it focuses, but the issue usually only lasts for a couple of hours or days.

If you suspect you might have high blood sugar, get checked right away. Youre at risk for type 2 diabetes if you are obese or have a family history of the disorder. Other symptoms include frequent urination and excessive thirst.

Concussion Not Needing Imaging

A traumatic brain injury , or concussion, happens when a bump, blow, jolt, or other head injury causes damage to the brain. Every year, millions of people in the U.S. suffer brain injuries. More than half are bad enough that people must go to the hospital, and the worst injuries can lead to permanent brain damage or death.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: dizziness, irritability, depressed mood, difficulty concentrating, trouble sleeping

Symptoms that always occur with concussion not needing imaging: head or face injury

Symptoms that never occur with concussion not needing imaging: recent fall from 6 feet or higher, severe vomiting, posttraumatic amnesia over 30 minutes, slurred speech, fainting, moderate vomiting

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Recommended Reading: How To Get Stress Under Control

Causes Of Blurry Vision

Blurry vision may happen at any moment when you suffer from anxiety, but they’re most common during periods of intense anxiety brought on by panic attacks/anxiety attacks or a response to a specific anxiety producing event .

There are two distinct issues that cause vision problems from anxiety. These are:

  • Pupil Dilation
  • Hyperventilation

Pupil dilation is a direct response of an overactive fight or flight system. When you have anxiety especially an anxiety attack your body reacts as though it is about to experience something profoundly dangerous . That triggers your nervous system to react by releasing adrenaline, which triggers several physiological changes including a faster heartbeat, blood that rushes to the muscles, sweating to cool you down, and more.

One of these reactions is to dilate your pupils. The evolutionary goal of this is to help bring in more light so that you can successfully fight or flee with better vision. But more light doesn’t necessarily make vision easier, so some type of blurred or problematic vision may result.

Another common cause of blurred vision is hyperventilation. Many people with anxiety especially those that have anxiety attacks find that they hyperventilate often, because their breathing has essentially changed in a way that causes breaths that are too fast. This causes you to breathe in too much air and breathe out too much carbon dioxide, and when your body is thrown off balance blurry vision is often the result.

What Happens To Your Vision When You Are Stressed

Anxiety and Distorted or Blurry Vision

Problems with your eyesight caused by stress are often temporary and will reduce once you are no longer stressed. If this doesnt happen, you should see your optician to make sure there are no underlying problems with your eyes.

Your pupils naturally dilate when stressed in order to enhance vision. If you are continually stressed, or experiencing a high stress situation, this could impact your vision. Due to how your body reacts to stressful situations, you may experience one, all, or none of the following symptoms.

Eye strain, while more commonly caused by digital screens, can also occur due to stress. This is because you will often tense your muscles, resulting in headaches and muscular pain. Similarly, eye twitching could be down to tense muscles, as well as lack of sleep which often occur if you are feeling stressed.

The dilation of your pupils for a prolonged period of time could result in blurred vision and light sensitivity. This is because when your eyes are dilated, they let more light in.

Dry eyes or watery eyes can also sometimes be caused by stress. You may experience one or the other, depending on how your body responds.

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Can Anxiety Make You Dizzy

Dizziness, which includes symptoms like lightheadedness or vertigo, has many underlying causes including anxiety. In the same way that anxiety can affect the vision, adrenaline and cortisol released by the sympathetic nervous system can also have a direct impact on the vestibular system.

Vestibular problems are one of the leading causes of lightheadedness, vertigo, and other symptoms related to dizziness. When stress hormones are released, they can influence the balance of the cells within the vestibular system, leading to these symptoms.

Interestingly, dizziness can also cause trouble focusing visually, which may lead to the feeling of blurred vision.

Anxiety triggers the release of multiple stress hormones, causing a wide variety of symptoms, including visual symptoms. Although visual symptoms differ from person to person, anxiety may also cause:

Some of these visual symptoms, like tunnel vision and light sensitivity, may be more likely to appear more during acute anxiety episodes, like a panic attack. But many of these symptoms, like eye strain and eye twitching, are more likely associated with the long-term effects of excess stress and anxiety.

While some level of anxiety is normal and necessary in everyday life, sometimes anxiety can become chronic and intrusive. Anxiety disorders affect more than 40 million adults in the United States, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness .

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