January is Glaucoma Awareness Month. Glaucoma is the leading cause of vision loss and blindness in the United States. Over 3 million Americans have glaucoma and 50% of them don’t even know it! Glaucoma has no symptoms in its early stages and by the time symptoms do arise, the disease has progressed so much that the vision that is lost cannot be restored.
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that damage the optic nerve and cause vision loss. Glaucoma can affect people of all ages, but the some risk factors for developing glaucoma include:
- Age 50 and older
- Family history of glaucoma
- People of a certain ethnic background including African American, Russian, Japanese and Hispanic/Latino
- History of eye injury or trauma
- High eye (intra-ocular) pressure
- Uncontrolled diabetes
- Chronic steroid use
Though there is not yet a cure for glaucoma, medication and/or surgery can slow or even prevent vision loss. Peripheral vision is usually lost first, making it very difficult for patients to notice until the damage has progressed to the central vision.
The best way to protect your sight is by getting an annual comprehensive eye exam by one of our trusted doctors, all of whom are board certified in the diagnosis, treatment and management of glaucoma. We perform important glaucoma screening measures during every eye exam, including checking the eye pressure and ensuring the optic nerve is healthy.
Protect your sight AND your health! Add scheduling your annual eye exam to your 2018 resolution list. We are open Monday through Saturday, with evening hours on Monday and Tuesday. We are just a call away if you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment. Don't let glaucoma steal your sight! Call us today! 913-829-5511