Your blood pressure and your eyes are connected in many ways. Did you know that high blood pressure may lead to vision loss, blurry vision and eye disease? It’s true. WebMD says high blood pressure, also referred to as hypertension, damages blood vessels in the retina, placed at the back of your eye where images are focused.
The eye disease that results is called hypertensive retinopathy, which can get pretty serious if the underlying hypertension remains untreated. Possible symptoms may include headache and vision problems. That being said, a lot of people don’t even show any symptoms until it is too late. Many are uncovered only at a yearly eye exam, which is why it’s critical to maintain annual visits to the eye doctor.
Treatment and prevention include keeping your blood pressure under control. Fairly simple. Stay at an ideal weight for you, follow doctor-recommended diets, exercise every day and take your high blood pressure medication as it has been prescribed. Continue to see your primary doctor as directed and your eye doctor annually.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, hypertension is a major risk factor for the onset or progression of many eye diseases, such as:
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Macular degeneration
- Blocked veins and arteries in the retina
Glaucoma, one of the most common eye diseases, is brought on by optic nerve damage resulting in vision loss. In this case, intraocular pressure is the main risk factor. From elevated eye pressure and family history to age and ethnicity, you could be at a higher risk.
There are several correlations between your eyes and blood pressure, as it relates to blood flow to the eye. Studies reveal that ocular perfusion pressure is a strong risk factor for glaucoma, referring to the relationship between eye pressure and blood pressure. When blood pressure gets low, this makes it difficult for the blood to supply enough oxygen and nutrients to the brain while removing waste products at the same time.
Aside from high blood pressure, your daily habits could put you at risk for glaucoma and other eye diseases, such as high cholesterol, failure to properly manage your diabetes, and smoking.
When blood pressure gets high, you could suffer problems with your retina, such as:
- Damage to eye nerves resulting from poor blood flow.
- Blocked veins carrying blood from the retina.
- Blocked blood supply to the retinal arteries.
Contact Simon Eye Associates
If you see any changes in your blood pressure and resulting vision problems, please call us at 302-239-1933. For your convenience, we have several Delaware locations to choose from. It’s important to keep up with your regular exams, and always call us if something seems off in between.