Mandy Moore Opens Up About Her Experience With Dry Eyes—'I Figured the Discomfort Was Something I Was Just Going to Have to Live With'

·3 min read

Anyone who has dry eye disease knows how debilitating it can be. In fact, approximately 16 million and 49 million people in the U.S. currently have dry eyes, and it's no fun.

Actress and performer Mandy Moore, 38, understands firsthand as someone who suffers from itchy, burning and tearing eyes. When her dry eye issues started to negatively impact her overall physical and mental health, she spoke with several doctors and discovered a solution with OptiLight, a new light-based treatment. Thrilled with the results, Moore partnered with Lumenis, the creators of Optilight for their new campaign to spread the word about dry eye disease and encourage people to not just “live with it” anymore.

She shared her story with Parade, explaining everything from her diagnosis journey to her passion for raising awareness for people who have been recently diagnosed with dry eye disease.

On Getting a Diagnosis

Moore said she dealt with symptoms for years before she finally got a diagnosis.

“I assumed I was dehydrated. I live in a desert,” says Moore. “And while both of these things are true, I also got a diagnosis a year ago of dry eye disease, which I’d never heard of. I just figured the discomfort I had with dry eyes was something that I was going have to live with.”

As an actress, her eyes play a very important role in her work, and having dry eyes made it extremely difficult to perform.

“I'd be in the middle of a scene and feel my eyes cloud over because they were so dry and I was immediately taken out of the moment. I could only think about my eyes and how uncomfortable I was. It was a vicious cycle,” Moore states.

Related: What Causes Dry Eyes? Spoiler Alert: The Screen You're Reading This on Is Just One

Moore constantly had to think about her eyes, and it significantly impacted her personal and professional life.

“My contact lenses would constantly bother me, especially when I spent long hours on set. It made it difficult for me to concentrate and be my best self whether I was on set or home with my family. The constant irritation in my eyes would just follow me and I would try and find relief with drops, but that only had a short-term effect,” she explains.

How Moore Manages Her Symptoms Now

To keep her symptoms at bay, Moore turns to OptiLight, a light therapy for dry eyes. She likes that it's comfortable and non-invasive.

“I was amazed to learn that treatments existed that could help me with my dry eyes," Moore say. "I was introduced to a new light-based treatment called OptiLight. The doctor went over what to expect, and how it's done. I liked that it’s performed as a series of four in-office treatments and that it's quick, comfortable, and requires no downtime. The treatment was easy and comfortable. It just felt like warm, pulses of light on my skin. I could have a treatment and then go back to my day.”

On Raising Awareness

Most importantly, Moore wants people to know that treatment options exist for dry eyes.

“You don't have to just live with it. This is the first time in years that I have felt amazing and comfortable in my own eyes. And again, treatment requires no downtime, which I think is a must for most people,” she explains. “It’s also empowering to know that you can seek an effective treatment.”

Next up: Be Strategic With Your Makeup, Hit the Gym, and Soak Up Some Sun: Here are the Top Simple Home Remedies for Dry Eyes