What causes the pressure behind eye? The feeling of pressure behind your eyes doesn’t always seem to be a problem inside your eyes. It could start somewhere in another part of your head.
There are numerous types of eye pains, but the feeling of pressure behind the eyes is something different.
This irresistable sensation may be caused by an issue affecting the eyes, but the actual cause could be a condition affecting the surrounding tissue of the face.
The tissues lining the eye socket and nose can be affected by an underlying allergy, sinus infection, severe cold/flu or other illness.
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In general, pain that follows another pain pattern follows a nerve pattern. In the case of a pain in or around the eyes, it can often follow a sinus pattern — meaning it may start in the sinus and the sensitive tissue near the eyes and radiate to the eyes themselves.
The sinuses are hollow lining in and around the nose and cheeks and they fill with air. When they fill with air, they can be affected by pressure.
The pressure behind eye can also happen when fluid builds up in the lymph nodes that are located in that area.
What Causes Pressure Behind Eye?
What causes these issues? Some of them are very easy to spot, like allergies (to dust, pollen, animals, etc.). Others are not so easy to spot — like stress and anxiety.
Lets have a closer look at the conditions that cause a feeling of pressure behind the eyes:
- Migraines and other headaches
- Sinus infection
- Graves’ disease
- Optic neuritis
- Injury to the face
We also see when someone should see a doctor and what treatment options are available.
Is pressure behind the eye dangerous?
Pressure behind the eyes is a common complaint, especially in patients who have fluid buildup in or around the eye.
Depending on the source of the pressure, it can be accompanied by other symptoms such as reddening of the white part of the eye (conjunctiva), pain in the eyeball, or headaches. It usually goes away on its own and does not require treatment.
Pressure behind the eyes is considered as not a serious medical concern, but it may indicate the presence of a more acute condition.
Pressure behind the eyes—also called periorbital edema—is caused by fluid retention in the soft tissue surrounding the eyes (orbit).
The excess fluid typically occurs after an allergic reaction, inflammation of the sinuses, or a blockage in the lymphatic system.
It may also be associated with certain types of cancer and tumors. This type of swelling typically affects both eyes and is generally painless and harmless.
If you notice pressure behind your eyes, you should see your doctor to determine the underlying cause.
If anyone notices symptoms such as loss of vision, bulging eyes, fever, frequent headaches, or facial swelling should consult their doctor as soon as possible.
What is pressure behind the eye mean?
The main function of the eye is to focus light onto the retina, at the back of the eye. The retina translates that light into electrical impulses that then travel through the optic nerve to the brain.
Back pain and headaches may be caused by glaucoma, a disorder related to high eye pressure.
How to relieve pressure behind eye?
There are many treatments for the chronic sinusitis. In mild cases, if doctor prescribed any medication, you can take decongestant and antihistamines to relieve pressure behind eye.
If you want to try non-prescription, you can take acetaminophen and ibuprofen (ibuprofen is not recommended for kids under 12) to treat headache and discomfort.
A sinus infection can be treated with drug to fight bacterial infection such as amoxicillin, bactrim, ciprofloxacin, clarithromycin, doxycycline, azithromycin (if you don’t have allergies), or levaquin.
Sometimes doctor will prescribe antibiotic pills and steroid nasal sprays to treat both bacterial and allergy caused sinus infection at the same time.
When pressure builds behind your eyes, you might get a headache. If the pressure lasts long enough, your eyes could lose their focus and feel like they’re bulging out of their sockets. It’s called papilledema, and it can be a sign of increased intracranial pressure (ICP).
Home Remedies to Relieve Pressure Behind Your Eye
If your eye pain is caused by allergies, try taking an antihistamine. Common antihistamines like Benadryl and Claritin can help reduce eye pressure and pain. Some natural remedies for allergies that may also help with eye pressure include:
In addition to antihistamines, some natural remedies can help reduce pressure in the sinuses.
Headache and Migraine with pressure behind eye
Many people who experience migraines and other types of headaches (including tension and cluster headaches) notice that the pain worsens when they bend forward and touch their forehead. This movement increases pressure in the brain, causing pain.
Migraines are defined as pressure or pain behind the eyes, ears and forehead.
Migraine headaches are considered to be worse than regular headaches because they can cause pain lasting hours to days at a time.
Migraine pain sometimes can become so severe that it may affect the quaity of the patient life.
This condition is caused by changes in the brain that allow nerve pathways to become active, causing inflammation around blood vessels in the brain.
You may feel pain in the center of your head or experience other symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, sensitivity to light, and severe throbbing in your head or even neck.
Effects of Migraines The goal of migraine treatment is to reduce the frequency and duration of attacks. Many different medications are available for this purpose, including: anti-inflammatory drugs, antidepressants and beta-blockers.
Pressure behind Eye and Ear
This condition not only impacts your life, but it can also impact your work and social life because migraines typically strike without warning and can last hours to days at a time.
The current underlying neurobiology of migraines is not well understood.
However, there is some evidence that two areas of the brain may be involved, which includes the thalamus and the hypothalamus.
The thalamus is important in how sensory information gets processed, and the hypothalamus appears to be involved in regulating sleep and Pressure behind eye and ear.
Additionally, these two areas interact with other parts of the brain that may also play a role in migraine headaches, including
- The cerebral cortex, which has to do with thinking and processing information
- Pituitary gland, which is important for hormones; and
- Brain stem, which controls many functions needed to maintain life.
Approximately 12 percent of women experience some type of migraine regularly during their reproductive years (ages 12-45). The frequency of migraines may be higher after menopause (after age 45).
The cause of the pressure behind your eye may be a mild illness, the underlying cause may be a serious illness. If left untreated those conditions can lead to a fatal condition.
If your eye strain does not dissappear with home remedies or over-the-counter pain medications, it is best to see a doctor.
Fortunately, you do not have to leave your home to consult a qualified doctor. Book an appointment online.