Could A Routine Eye Exam Save Your Life?

Health & Medical Blog

Your vision is important, and routine eye exams can help you preserve it. Identifying vision changes or problems early can help you get treatment that can prevent those issues from worsening. But could a routine eye exam save more than just your vision? You might be surprised to learn that your eye doctor could be the first person to spot certain life-threatening conditions, just by looking in your eyes. Take a look at a few of the ways that a routine eye exam might just save your life:

Diabetes and Your Eyes

You might be aware that diabetes can affect vision and eye health, so it's important for people who have diabetes to take extra care to preserve their eye health. But what if you don't know that you have diabetes yet? An eye exam could help catch this condition early.

One of the things that your eye doctor will be looking for is vascular changes in your retinas. In diabetic patients, the blood vessels in your retinas might leak or hemorrhage. If your eye doctor notices this, they'll probably recommend that you get your blood sugar levels checked right away.

Aneurysms and Your Eyes

An eye exam can also reveal early signs of a brain aneurysm. Aneurysms are caused by weak blood vessels in your brain that bulge out. If one of these bulging blood vessels ruptures, it can lead to death. Your eyes can reveal some early symptoms of an aneurysm, which can lead to life-saving early treatment.

Blurry vision, headaches, and pain in your eyes – all things that you might visit an eye doctor for – could be signs of a brain aneurysm. Your eye doctor will look for other potentially dangerous signs, like swelling in your optic nerve or high pressure in your eyeball. Aneurysms may also cause changes in your retinas.

High Blood Pressure and Your Eyes

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, puts you at risk of deadly conditions like strokes, heart attacks, and kidney failure. It can also lead to blindness if left untreated. However, high blood pressure has very few obvious symptoms, so you may not suspect that you have it until it becomes dangerous.

High blood pressure can show up in your eyes, though. Specifically, it can show up in the blood vessels in your eyes. An eye doctor might notice that these blood vessels have tears, kinks, or bends. They might also notice changes in the veins and arteries in the backs of your eyes.

Routine eye exams should be a part of your regular health routine. Keeping up with them could not only save your vision, it could save your life. If it's been too long since your last eye exam, make it a point to schedule a visit to your eye doctor in the near future. 


3 November 2017