Glaucoma is an eye disease which damages the optic nerve. For reasons which we still don’t quite understand, the nerve damage is often related to pressure in the eye.
Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness, and occurs most frequently in adults over the age of 60 – although younger people can develop the condition as well.
Early symptoms can include:
- patchy blind spots in vision
- tunnel vision
- eye pain
- light halos
- red eyes
While glaucoma cannot be cured, with early detection and treatment, most vision loss can be prevented.
How can an optician identify it?
Your optician has two routine tests they use to discover glaucoma before serious damage occurs.
- Tonometry- This test measures pressure in the eye, often with a warm puff of air.
- Opthalmoscopy- This test will dilate your pupil and the doctor will visually inspect the optic nerve.
The most common type of glaucoma, called primary open-angle glaucoma, is hereditary. If members of your immediate family have glaucoma, you are at a much higher risk than the rest of the population. Family history increases risk of glaucoma four to nine times.
How is Glaucoma resolved?
If caught early, vision damage can be slowed or even prevented. If you’re diagnosed with glaucoma, you’ll likely need treatment for it for the rest of your life. Treatment usually consists of eye drops, medication, and occasionally surgery.
Can glasses help?
Glaucoma can cause light sensitivity, so if you’ve been diagnosed, you may want to pick up a good pair of sunglasses from our large selection at Dr Specs Optical in Kelowna.
You’ll also want to talk to your optician about whether you should order precription photophobia glasses which help filter light.
Don’t Wait to Schedule an Annual Eye Checkup
With regular testing, early detection, and appropriate treatment vision loss from glaucoma can be significantly lessened and managed. Dr. Spec’s Optical provides glaucoma examinations, as well as affordable, high-quality eyewear so don’t wait to give us a call.
Even if you aren’t experiencing trouble with your vision, an eye exam can uncover problems before symptoms occur. Book an appointment with Dr. Kwasnek today.