All About National Glaucoma Awareness Month: Your Top Questions Answered

Senior couple  together in parkDid you know that January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month? During this holiday, eye doctors urge the public to check their eyes. Regular comprehensive eye exams are the best way to prevent vision loss caused by glaucoma.

During a comprehensive eye exam, your eye doctor will check for glaucoma, other eye conditions, and vision problems. They will also update your eyeglass prescription if needed.

Make an appointment with an eye doctor near you today if you have not had a comprehensive eye exam in the past two years.

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes damage to the optic nerve. The optic nerve is responsible for sending signals from the eye to the brain, and when it is damaged, vision is affected. Glaucoma usually occurs when the pressure in the eye becomes too high. This can happen when the eye does not drain fluid properly.

There are two main types of glaucoma: open-angle glaucoma and angle-closure glaucoma. Open-angle glaucoma is the most common type of glaucoma. It develops slowly and usually has no early symptoms.

Angle-closure glaucoma is less common but can be more serious. It happens when the drainage angle in the eye becomes blocked. This can cause a sudden increase in pressure in the eye, leading to pain, redness, and blurred vision.

Who is at Risk for Glaucoma?

Glaucoma can affect anyone, although some people are at a greater risk than others. Glaucoma risk factors include: 

  • Have African-American ancestry: African Americans are more likely to get glaucoma than other groups.
  • Over 60 years of age: Glaucoma is more common in older adults.
  • Family history of glaucoma: Having a parent or sibling with glaucoma increases your risk.
  • Are diabetic: People with diabetes are more likely to get glaucoma.
  • High blood pressure: High blood pressure can damage the optic nerve.
  • Very nearsighted or farsighted: Nearsightedness and farsightedness can damage the optic nerve.

Our San Joaquin Valley eye doctors can perform glaucoma tests if you have any risk factors. Early detection of glaucoma is the best way to prevent its effects—Call 1-800-244-9907 to schedule your next eye exam at Central Valley Eye Medical Group.

Posted in: Glaucoma


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