As January marks National Glaucoma Awareness Month, in this article we are here to stress the importance of knowing about the threat of this vision threatening disease. Glaucoma is a category of progressive ocular diseases that damage the optic nerve, which may be a precursor to a permanent loss of vision. If uncontrolled, the damage often initially shows up as peripheral vision loss and then moves to total blindness. Glaucoma is considered to be the number one cause of preventable vision loss and, according to estimates, over 60 million people around the world are afflicted with the disease.
A significant reason for the development of glaucoma is considered to be an increase in pressure around the optic nerve. The elevation in pressure causes damage to the optic nerve which is responsible for delivering signals to the brain. When this system is damaged eyesight is impaired. Unfortunately, damage to the optic nerve can't be reversed.
The most concerning thing about glaucoma is that distinct from other causes of vision loss, there are no signs that indicate the progression of the condition until vision is already lost.
This is why glaucoma is described as the "sneak thief of sight." This may leave you wondering: how is it possible to diagnose a condition which lacks any tell-tale symptoms?
Early detection of glaucoma is required for effective care. While glaucoma risk is universal, certain groups are at higher risk than others. Serious risk factors for glaucoma may include those over 45 years of age, anyone with a family history of glaucoma, individuals with diabetes, or other eye conditions such as myopia, hyperopia, eye injuries or elevated intraocular pressure.
An effective way to detect glaucoma is to find a qualified optometrist. There are several diagnostic eye tests used to assess intraocular pressure and the risk of glaucoma. Especially if you are 45 or older or have one of the other risk factors named above, you should book a comprehensive eye exam at least once a year.
Unfortunately for the most part glaucoma cannot be prevented. However the deterioration of sight can be stopped by timely diagnosis and proper treatment. Don't delay! Contact Lionsgate Optometry and Optical now, for an annual screening for glaucoma.