Should You Worry about High Intraocular Pressure?

30 March 2022
 Categories: , Blog

Did you know that the human eye contains a special type of fluid that is constantly moving to protect internal components and is also being refreshed daily? Most of the time, this process will continue without any issue, but occasionally, complications can develop. When this happens, the pressure within the eye could build-up, leading to glaucoma and other ailments. What do you need to know about this pressure, and how can an optometrist help you monitor the situation?

Moving Fluid

The fluid within the eye is known as the aqueous humor and is controlled by a special mechanism known as the trabecular meshwork. When the fluid is moving as it should, it helps to retain the shape of the eye and deliver important nutrients while eliminating waste. Towards the rear of the eye is a separate drainage tube that gets rid of any waste through the nose and throat.


Sometimes, the meshwork becomes congested and may not allow the fluid to drain out as it should. In this case, the fluid could build up and increase the pressure within the eye, which may lead to problems with vision, glaucoma or even retinal detachment.

Risk Factors

Some people are more at risk than others, and the problem can definitely get worse as you age. This is why it's important to schedule a regular exam with an optometrist so that they can measure the intraocular pressure using special tools.


In the past, an optometrist would use a device that sent a puff of air onto the eye's surface so they could read the fluid pressure. These days they have a more sophisticated device (called tonometry) which they gently press onto the surface of the eye once you have received eyedrops as an anaesthetic. This allows them to measure the pressure with high accuracy.

Pressure Levels

Intraocular pressure can change throughout the day and is thought to be at its highest during the morning. If a test does reveal high-pressure levels, you may need several additional tests or monitor the situation daily. The optometrist can carry out further examinations to look for any other damage to the optic nerve or retina.


Those people who suffer from high intraocular pressure may not always need additional treatment. Others who may be at higher risk of developing glaucoma may need medicated eyedrops or other procedures.

Making an Appointment

If you feel that you could be at risk of developing high intraocular pressure, make sure that you talk with your optometrist and schedule an eye exam appointment soon.