The month of January marks the beginning of National Glaucoma Awareness Month.
Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the world. Organizations such as Prevent Blindness America (PBA), American Optometric Association, the National Eye Institute, and Glaucoma Research Foundation are calling attention to this serious disease and are urging people to educate themselves about glaucoma and get an eye exam.
After cataracts, glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness affecting over 2 million Americans.
The ethnicity at the highest risk is African – Americans. According to the PBA, of all the people that actually have glaucoma, at least half of them don’t even know it.
Glaucoma is a disease that affects your optic nerve. Typically due to intraocular pressure, or increased eye pressure, the optic nerve becomes damaged and isn’t able to carry information from the eye to the brain.
There are four major types of glaucoma: open-angle (chronic), angle-closure (acute), congenital, and secondary.
Another scary fact about glaucoma: open-angle (chronic) glaucoma is the most common type patients usually suffer from, but most people have no symptoms.
However, all hope is not lost. Through early detection and treatment, your vision can be saved. An early diagnosis is key. Once determined that you are showing signs of glaucoma, treatments can be put in place to reduce the pressure off the optic nerve. There are several different methods of doing this that are dependent on the type of glaucoma occurring.
Not all glaucoma is curable, but most symptoms can be alleviated.
This January, schedule a comprehensive eye exam with an optometrist today, and get yourself screened for glaucoma. Your vision is too important to lose to a disease like glaucoma. Visit your local Eyeglass World location today.