People over the age of 40 are more likely to see an eye doctor. Many don't realize how important their eyes are to their health.
It's possible that your eyes are the first part of your body to show signs of high blood pressure.
An estimated 1.3 billion people worldwide have high blood pressure, but only half of them are aware of it or have been diagnosed. Many people don't know they have high blood pressure. It's also why it's called the silent killer.
It's not something that develops suddenly. Many years of poor diet, lack of physical activity, smoking, and excess alcohol consumption is the reason for it. A family history of high blood pressure is a risk factor.
If left unaddressed, high blood pressure can lead to a number of health problems. Regular eye exams can be used to detect high blood pressure early.
If you have high blood pressure, there are a number of ways to find out. You can get it checked at your doctor's office, or at a pharmacy. A stethoscope, arm cuff, or an automated arm cuff can be used at home.
If a person is at greater risk of having high blood pressure, they should get their blood pressure checked annually.
Your eye doctor may be able to detect signs of high blood pressure before your doctor does.
Many parts of the eye can be seen, including the small blood vessels.
These small blood vessels are sensitive to changes in blood pressure and can be damaged by high blood pressure, which can cause blurry vision. The health of the eye may be affected by a build up of fluid beneath the retina.
The diameter of blood vessels can be measured during an eye exam to see if a person has high blood pressure. Blood pressure can be seen in the red areas of the eyes if the eye doctor takes a photo of it.
The brain's circulation is very close to the eye's circulation. "The window to the brain" refers to the eyes' development from brain tissue. Changes in the eye's blood vessels can be used as an early warning sign for diseases in the brain and other parts of the body.
Changes in the eye's blood vessels can be a symptom of other diseases affecting the eyes, so if you see any changes in the eye's blood vessels, you need to see a doctor.
In order to diagnose someone with high blood pressure by looking at their eyes, they need to have fluid build up in the eye. The diameter of blood vessels in the eyes can be used to predict who is at higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
If you have high blood pressure, your doctor may want to ask you about it during your eye exam. Artificial intelligence could be used to identify people at risk of having a heart attack.
While a regular eye exam doesn't replace a regular health checkup with your doctor, it is often the first place that high blood pressure is picked up.
Damage to the eyes can be caused by diseases such as diabetes, which can be caught by the eye doctor.
Rebekka Heitmar is a senior lecturer at the University of Hertfordshire.
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