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“High Blood Pressure: The Silent Threat to Your Eyes and Health”

High blood pressure, often dubbed the silent killer, poses a risk of serious health problems without displaying obvious symptoms. Approximately 5.5 million people in England unknowingly have high blood pressure, as reported by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

NHS England and Public Health England (PHE) emphasize that timely treatment could prevent around 9,710 heart attacks and 14,500 strokes. While high blood pressure typically lacks noticeable symptoms, some individuals may experience headaches and dizziness, serving as potential red flags.

However, another indicator may appear in your eyes. The impact of hypertension on eye health is contingent on the severity and control of blood pressure. The World Health Organization (WHO) notes that untreated very high blood pressure might lead to blurred vision or other vision changes.

The American Heart Association highlights that insufficient blood flow to the retina can result in blurred vision or complete loss of sight. Individuals with both diabetes and high blood pressure face an elevated risk of developing this condition.

In addition to blurred vision, high blood pressure may manifest in two other eye-related signs. Dr. Sally Ameen, Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon at OCL Vision, underscores that redness and discomfort or pain in the eyes can also be attributed to the condition.

If individuals notice any of these warning signs, Dr. Ameen recommends seeking a comprehensive eye examination, including assessments of the fundus and retina, especially if they are aware of poorly controlled blood pressure.

The World Health Organization lists various warning signs of high blood pressure, including severe headaches, chest pain, dizziness, difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, anxiety, confusion, buzzing in the ears, nosebleeds, and abnormal heart rhythm. WHO advises those experiencing such symptoms and suspecting high blood pressure to seek immediate medical care, emphasizing that the only way to detect hypertension is through professional blood pressure measurement.

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