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Dry Eye and Mental Health

Dry Eye Disease impacts not only our physical health but also our mental health.[1] If you’re experiencing some of the negative mental effects of Dry Eye, you’re not alone. In this blog, we’ll be sharing how Dry Eye is linked to your mental health and some ways you can cope with this.


Can Dry Eyes be psychological?

There is strong evidence to suggest that Dry Eye Disease can have implications for mental health. A study by Marko Toth in the Journal of Health Psychology and Behavioural Medicine found that symptoms of Dry Eye can be associated with depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.[2]

There have been numerous other studies done to explore the effects of Dry Eye Disease on Mental Health. For example, a study in the BMJ Open has found that 47% of patients with Dry Eye Disease have mental health difficulties.[3] This is a very worrying statistic and our community is here to support you.


Two hands clasped together


How can Dry Eyes impact depressive feelings?

In a study by the European Journal of Ophthalmology, 40% of people with Dry Eye had depression.[1] The symptoms of Dry Eye, such as dry and itchy eyes, can have a negative impact on everyday life and make us feel isolated.


Can anxiety cause Dry Eye syndrome?

In the study by the European Journal of Ophthalmology, 39% of people suffered from anxiety.[1] Dry Eye Disease can cause us a lot of worry and unease, especially as it can make us feel so disorientated.


Woman with hot drink


How can I deal with Dry Eye and mental health?

There are a number of things you can do to help your mental health if you are suffering from Dry Eye Disease. Read below to find out more. 


Hand turning away wine


Drink less alcohol

Mental health problems and alcohol are closely linked because of how it affects our brain and body.[4] Drinking alcohol is also bad for Dry Eye as it increases the sugar levels in your blood. This causes your eyes to swell, meaning your vision can become blurry.[5] Therefore, drinking less can have a positive effect on both your physical and mental health. For more information on alcohol and Dry Eye, visit our blog.


Man and woman running


Make sure you exercise

The charity, Mind UK, argues that physical exercise can help with mental health issues.[6] If you exercise outdoors, it’s a good idea to wear a pair of wrap-around glasses, which can protect your eyes from windy conditions.[7]


Woman making salad


Eat healthily

Another strategy to help with your mental health is to eat healthily.[8] This also has benefits for Dry Eye Disease sufferers, as there are certain vitamins that are good for your eyes. For the full list of vitamins to take for Dry Eye, read this blog.

For more information on mental health, please visit the NHS website and consider a service such as Mind.


In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

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  1. Denise Myshko. ‘Analysis Assesses Relationship Between Dry Eye Disease and Psychiatric Disorders’, Managed Healthcare Executive, 07/08/22. Accessed November 2022
  2. Marko Toth, Nataša Jokić-Begić. ‘Psychological contribution to understanding the nature of dry eye disease: a cross-sectional study of anxiety sensitivity and dry eyes’, Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine, 1(8) 202-119, 28/05/20. Accessed November 2022
  3. Parwez Hossain et al. ‘Patient-reported burden of dry eye disease in the UK: a cross-sectional web-based survey’, BMJ Open, BMJ Journals, 11 (3), 04/03/21. Accessed November 2022
  4. Mental Health Foundation, ‘Alcohol and mental health’, 16/02/22. Accessed November 2022.
  5. Ferrier & Mackinnon Optometrists, ‘Dry January, Not So Dry Eyes’. Accessed November 2022
  6. Mind, ‘Physical activity and your mental health’. Accessed November 2022.
  7. Nall, Rachel. ‘Treating (and Preventing) Dry Eyes in Winter’, Healthline, 30/09/20. Accessed November 2022.
  8. Sutter Health, ‘Eating Well for Mental Health’. Accessed November 2022.
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