January is Glaucoma Awareness Month
2019! It’s a new year and a fresh start! The new year is usually when people start making resolutions for themselves, most want to adopt a healthier attitude or make more time for themselves, well we have one that combines both. Glaucoma is an eye disease that leads to irreversible blindness and unfortunately it does not generally present any signs or symptoms. This month we are going to raise awareness about Glaucoma otherwise known as “The sneak thief of sight”.
As we have already mentioned, glaucoma is made all the more dangerous as there are usually no symptoms of the disease, the best way to protect yourself is to get your eyes regularly checked by an optometrist. If your optometrist suspects glaucoma during the exam then you will need to undergo more testing in order to help your optometrist come to a more definitive diagnosis. Most glaucoma is diagnosed by seeing a change in the optic nerve or peripheral vision over time.
Are you at risk for Glaucoma?
Those who are at higher risk of glaucoma are of African, Hispanic or Asian descent as well as anyone over 40 or who already have a pre existing condition such as diabetes or already have glaucoma. Eye exams are especially critical for those who are high risk as it may help prevent vision loss or at the very least if any condition is found, it may be treated quicker.
The best way to protect your sight is to schedule regular eye exams and if there is any sudden onset of any eye symptoms, it is better to book an appointment at an optometry clinic than a walk in clinic as optometrist are specialists of the eyes and will be able to diagnose eye pain quicker than a general doctor.
At View Optometry we have high tech diagnostic equipment specifically designed for early detection of glaucoma. As part of a glaucoma work-up, first we will take a scan of your optic nerve which measures the tissue around it, then the optometrist will measure the angle where the fluid drains from your eye, and finally you will need to complete a visual field test which measures your peripheral vision. All of these tests will need to be repeated periodically to see if there are any changes happening to your vision or your optic nerve.