Anxiety should probably be named the Great Imitator. It causes a host of symptoms that are nearly identical to serious medical problems, which is one of the reasons that so many people with anxiety struggle with health concerns, because it becomes too difficult to differentiate between a real health problem and an anxiety created one.
Your vision is just one of the areas that can be affected by anxiety, and that has caused some people to worry about blindness. So the question is: can stress and anxiety make you blind?
Blindness = Anxiety?
Never leave your vision problems to chance. See a doctor if you're concerned about your eye health, and make sure you take my free 7 minute anxiety test to find out if you are at risk for severe anxiety and what to do about it.
Anxiety and Vision
Stress certainly has an effect on every single function in your body. Anxiety itself is known to affect vision. Make sure you take my anxiety test to understand the symptoms of anxiety and what they mean.
Anxiety causes the pupils to dilate, which lets in more light and also leads to more eye pain. Anxiety also seems to contribute to eye strain, which can lead to more vision problems. Anxiety can cause double vision, blurry vision, and in rare cases issues that almost seem like visual hallucinations.
But when it comes to whether or not anxiety can cause blindness, the answer is no. There is currently no evidence that anxiety causes true blindness, as in the inability to see.
Suffering From Blindness
If you have found yourself suddenly blind, or blind for any extended period of time, you'll need to contact your eye doctor. Sudden blindness is often the result of an underlying problem, such as:
- Eye Damage
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Heavy Metal Toxicity
Blindness may be caused be some medications, and may be the result of behaviors you use to cope with anxiety - such as drug addiction/abuse. But there is currently no evidence that blindness is caused by anxiety. Blindness is one of the few issues that is highly unlikely to be anxiety related, so seeing a doctor is valuable.
Dealing With a Fear of Blindness
Now, what is very common is a fear of blindness, as well as believing that something is causing you to go blind. That's because the vision problems from anxiety can often seem pronounced, and when they're accompanied by other symptoms - such as eye pain - it often feels like something must be going wrong in your eyes.
Fear of going blind, is a very real fear, especially if your vision has been impacted by your anxiety. So it should be noted that if you haven't gone blind and you find yourself extremely worried about it without medical reason, that's likely a symptom of anxiety.
Overcoming Your Anxiety Over Blindness
Because anxiety shouldn't cause blindness, the key is to talk to your doctor. You need to know what's causing your blindness in order to address it. If you're dealing with anxiety because you're blind, or you're experiencing anxiety over going blind, then you need to start actively trying to treat your anxiety in order to give you the best opportunity to experience a better quality of life.
I've helped hundreds of people with these types of anxieties control their anxiety forever with my free 7 minute anxiety test. Take the test now to find out more about your anxiety symptoms.
Author: Micah Abraham, BSc Psychology, last updated Sep 28, 2017.