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January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month

As this month has been designated National Glaucoma Awareness Month, this post is intended to emphasize the importance of early diagnosis of glaucoma. Glaucoma is a group of progressive eye disorders that cause damage to the optic nerve, which can lead to irreversible blindness. If untreated, glaucoma often first causes peripheral vision loss until it eventually results in a complete loss of vision. It is considered to be the number one reason for preventable loss of vision and over sixty million individuals worldwide have the disease.

A significant source of glaucoma is known to be increased pressure around the optic nerve known as intraocular pressure. The increase in pressure around the eye causes damage to the optic nerve which is responsible for delivering messages from the eye to the brain. When this pathway is damaged eyesight is impaired. Regrettably, damage to the optic nerve can't be fixed.

Glaucoma is especially threatening because distinct from other causes of vision impairment, there are no symptoms until it may be too late.
It is because of the disease's subtle nature glaucoma is often called the "sneak thief of sight." The quandary is: how does one safeguard against an illness which lacks any obvious symptoms?

Early diagnosis of the disease is required for effective management. While everyone may be at risk for glaucoma, particular groups have a higher risk than others. Risk factors for glaucoma can include those over 45, those with a family history of glaucoma, individuals with diabetes, or other eye conditions such as myopia, hyperopia, eye injuries or elevated intraocular pressure.

There are different types of glaucoma such as open or close angle glaucomas. The condition usually affects both eyes, although the disease has been known to advance more rapidly in one eye than in the other.

To learn more about glaucoma find a qualified optometrist. There are a number of diagnostic eye evaluations relied on by doctors to measure damage to the ocular nerves caused by glaucoma. Particularly if you are 45 or older or know that you are at risk, it's important to book a routine eye exam on an annual basis.

The truth is that most kinds of glaucoma cannot be prevented. However the loss of sight caused by damage to the optic nerve can be slowed by early diagnosis and prompt treatment. Contact "Dr. Alan Schwartz O.D., P.C." now, for a yearly screening for glaucoma.