January Is Glaucoma Awareness Month: Protect Your Vision
Did you know that around 3 million people in the U.S. have glaucoma? With January being Glaucoma Awareness Month, this is a good time to learn more about this eye disease. Glaucoma is a leading cause of permanent vision loss. But finding it early and managing it can help prevent this from happening.
How do you know if you have glaucoma? What kinds of treatments are available for it? The following can help you understand glaucoma better and know when to see an ophthalmologist for testing and treatment.
What Causes Glaucoma?
Glaucoma happens when your optic nerve is damaged. This might occur due to high pressure in your eye, but you can also have glaucoma without increased pressure. Different types of this eye disease include:
Open-angle is the most common type. Angle-closure can develop slowly over time or suddenly. Unfortunately, each of these eye conditions can lead to serious vision impairments, including complete blindness.
Common Symptoms of Glaucoma
It is not always easy to tell if you have this eye disease. Any symptoms you experience will depend on what type of glaucoma you have. Early stages of open-angle glaucoma usually do not have any obvious symptoms. As the condition worsens, though, you might gradually lose your side vision (peripheral vision), followed by your central vision.
How Is Glaucoma Treated?
Treatment options usually focus on lowering the pressure in your eyes. Prescription eye drops and oral medications are usually the first line of treatment. Laser therapy and surgical procedures are sometimes used to ease eye pressure.
What Can I Do To Prevent Glaucoma?
Know your risk factors. If this eye disease runs in your family, or you have other risk factors, such as diabetes, go for regular eye exams. This helps catch glaucoma early. Limiting caffeine, using prescribed eye drops, and getting regular exercise may also help lower eye pressure and reduce your risk of developing glaucoma.
Glaucoma Tests and Treatment at Central Valley Eye Medical Group
If you are at a higher risk of glaucoma or if you have noticed any vision changes, it’s time to set up an eye exam. Please call Central Valley Eye Medical Group at 209-952-3700 to schedule an appointment at our Stockton, Manteca, or Modesto location. Our board-certified ophthalmologists strive to provide personalized attention and state-of-the-art eye care to every patient.
Posted in: Glaucoma