Eye Pressure (Ocular Hypertension)

Ocular Hypertension (OHT) is a term used to describe an elevated level of intraocular pressure (IOP). More commonly, it’s the medical term for high eye pressure. Your eyeball is a spherical organ filled with two types of fluid: The vitreous humor, a translucent gelatinous material behind the lens that fills the majority of your eyeball and maintains its shape The aqueous humor, a luminous fluid before the lens that fills the space between your cornea and iris

Think in terms of a car’s tire for an analogy. If a tire has too much air in it, the tire feels tight and stiff. Eyes are much the same in this respect. When there’s not enough pressure, they are soft and spongy, which means they’re not working at their optimal level, just like a tire. If your eye pressure is too high, however, then they’re taught and firm. While tires are measured in pounds per square inch (PSI), eyes are measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg). Incidentally, this is same measurement for barometric pressure.

It is estimated that between four and eight percent of the American population over the age of 40 suffer from some form of OHT. Certain individuals can actually tolerate higher levels than 21 mmHg without suffering any nerve damage, while others suffer damage at lower levels. This condition is referred to as normotensive glaucoma.

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