Healthy aging

Detecting glaucoma early can prevent loss of sight

Are you guilty of taking your eyes for granted? If your eyesight seems unchanged, you might have skipped an annual eye exam, but a thorough exam can detect underlying issues that may not present any obvious symptoms — which is the case with glaucoma.

Glaucoma attacks the eye’s optic nerve. It is linked to a build-up of pressure in the eye.

Glaucoma is the leading cause of preventable sight loss. This disease advances quietly, causing irreparable damage before the appearance of obvious symptoms or pain. Most people won’t notice a change in their vision because glaucoma damage begins slowly in the peripheral field of vision, where we are least aware of visual clarity.

People over 60 are at higher risk, however depending on the type of glaucoma, it can develop at any age. Certain forms of glaucoma are hereditary. This doesn’t mean that if it runs in your family you are going to have glaucoma, but it significantly increases your risk. It is important that your optometrist is made aware if there is a family history of this disease.

Given that there is no cure for glaucoma, regular complete eye exams allowing early diagnosis and observation are crucial. Thankfully there are treatments for glaucoma to help slow its progression. Treatments can minimize the chances of developing further vision loss issues.

Article courtesy of IRIS