As January has been designated National Glaucoma Awareness Month, this post is intended to stress the importance of early diagnosis of this vision threatening disease. Glaucoma is a class of progressive ocular diseases that damage the optic nerve, which can be a precursor to a loss of vision. When not treated, glaucoma often first results in peripheral vision loss and then moves to total blindness. Glaucoma is thought to be the number one reason for avoidable blindness and more than sixty million individuals around the world have the vision threatening condition.
One of the leading causes of glaucoma is considered to be increased pressure around the optic nerve. The elevation in pressure damages the optic nerve which delivers messages from the eye to the brain. When this pathway is damaged eyesight is impaired. Unfortunately, damage to the optic nerve is typically untreatable.
Glaucoma is especially threatening because distinct from other causes of vision loss, there are no indicators that serve as a warning until irreparable damage is done.
It is because of the disease’s subtle nature glaucoma is often called the “sneak thief of sight.” The question is how can a patient safeguard against an illness which has no obvious symptoms?
Prompt detection of glaucoma is required for successful treatment. While glaucoma risk is universal, particular populations are more at risk than others. Serious risk factors for glaucoma can include anyone over 45, anyone having a family history of glaucoma, a predisposition towards diabetes, or known eye problems such as high intraocular pressure.
The best way to detect glaucoma is to speak to your eye doctor. There are a number of diagnostic eye evaluations employed to assess the beginnings of glaucoma. Particularly if you are 45 or older or have one of the other risk factors named above, make sure to schedule a routine eye exam annually.
Unfortunately for the most part glaucoma cannot be prevented. Nevertheless the deterioration of sight can be stopped by a reliable diagnosis and treatment. Contact Coventry Eyecare Associates Ltd now for your annual glaucoma screening.