Glaucoma affects more than 3 million Americans every year and is a leading cause of vision loss in the United States. Since January is Glaucoma Awareness Month, it is the perfect time to educate yourself about this common eye condition. We’ve gathered what you need to know about glaucoma, its signs and symptoms, and what treatment options are available for your best health.
Glaucoma is a disease that occurs when a fluid called aqueous humor is unable to drain through the front of the eye. With nowhere to go, this fluid builds up, subsequently increasing intraocular pressure and damaging the optic nerve located at the back of the eye. This damage can eventually lead to vision loss, though this can often be prevented with proactive care, early diagnosis, and treatment.
There are two main types of glaucoma: primary open-angle glaucoma and angle-closure glaucoma, which is also called closed-angle or narrow-angle glaucoma. The first type is the most common and occurs gradually over time. Because it can be asymptomatic in early stages, annual eye care appointments are the key to maintaining healthy vision.
The second type of glaucoma occurs when the iris is too close to the drainage angle, resulting in a total blockage that causes eye pressure to rise quickly. This is called an acute attack. If you experience symptoms such as severe eye pain, sudden blurred vision, headache, nausea, or rainbow halos around lights, you should call your eye care office immediately. This condition can cause vision loss if not treated quickly.
Though glaucoma is not reversible, medicine and surgery can stop further damage. The eye care specialists at Better Vision New Jersey will work with you to come up with an individualized treatment plan. We take into account factors like what kind of glaucoma you have and how far the disease has progressed before creating your custom treatment plan.
Medicated eye drops, which lower eye pressure, are one of the most common glaucoma treatments. Other options include surgeries, which help with drainage and lower eye pressure. No matter what, do not take glaucoma treatment into your own hands. Trust our experts for scientifically proven results. Self-medicating with home remedies that have been popularized online (cannabis, supplements, etc.) can be ineffective and even potentially dangerous.
Whatever your treatment plan entails, it will likely require more visits to manage your disease. Luckily, with proactive eye care and a strong doctor-patient relationship, you can preserve your vision and enjoy lifelong health.
To book your next appointment, call our office today. We look forward to helping you maintain healthy vision through regular care, early diagnosis, and effective treatment.