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Can Glasses Cause Headaches?



Glasses CAN cause headaches.

More Info: Glasses can cause headaches in people who wear them for several different reasons. Most headaches that are caused from wearing glasses are due to eyestrain.

What Is Eyestrain?

When you think of the location of the muscles in your body, your eye is probably not the first body part that comes to mind.  The eye actually has six strong muscles that work together to move the eye.

  • The superior rectus is attached to the top of the eye and moves the eye upward.
  • The inferior rectus is attached to the bottom of the eye and moves the eye downward.
  • The medial rectus is attached to the side of the eye near the nose and moves the eye horizontally toward the nose.
  • The lateral rectus is attached to the other side of the eye near the temple and moves the eye outward.
  • Two additional muscles, the superior oblique and the inferior oblique also aid in eye movement.

When these muscles become fatigued or strained from overuse, eyestrain occurs.

Another part of the eye that is susceptible to strain is the ciliary body. The ciliary body helps to change the shape of lens, which bring objects into focus.

The most common symptom of eyestrain is a headache.

Why Would Glasses Cause Eyestrain?

There are several reasons that your glasses could be causing you eyestrain.   One common cause of eyestrain is wearing glasses that are not prescribed for your individual needs.  Wearing the wrong prescription will cause your eyes to work overtime attempting to bring an object into focus.

A new prescription may also cause headaches as your eyes adjust to the changes. Alternatively, the prescription may be inaccurate and need correction.

New Glasses

New glasses can mean many new adjustments for your eyes, but give your eyes time to get use to your new prescription. One eye may have a much higher prescription than the other eye, making you feel off balance and causing some eyestrain.


With astigmatism, the lens should be centered in the middle of your eye, if it is not properly centered it can cause headaches and will require adjustment.

Strong Prescription

In addition, if you have a strong prescription, your peripheral vision will be distorted looking through the lens, but you should get use to that overtime.

Physical Adjustments to Glasses

Sometimes something as simple as the nose support not centered correctly to your face can cause headaches.

How to Prevent Eyestrain Induced Headaches

The best way to prevent the eyestrain caused from glasses is to make sure that you have an up to date prescription.  You should visit your eye care professional once per year to ensure your prescription’s accuracy.

Working on a computer screen for extended periods can also cause eyestrain, especially if you wear glasses due to the glare.  If you think that this may be the cause of your eyestrain induced headaches, purchase lenses with an anti-reflective coating.  The coating reduces glare by minimizing the amount of light that reflects off the lenses.



“Anatomy of the Eye.” American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. N.p.,n.d. Web. 4 June 2015. <>

“Eye Strain.” N.p., n.d. Web. 4 June 2015. <>.

“How can I determine if my new glasses are causing my headaches? – WebMD Answers.” Get answers to your health questions – WebMD Answers. N.p., n.d. Web. 4 June 2015. <>.

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