You might be at a higher risk for glaucoma if you:
Have a family history of glaucoma
Are over age 45
Have a history of eye injury
Have increased intraocular (eye fluid) pressure
Are you dealing with changes in your vision?
It’s likely the natural progression of aging.
But if you’re also experiencing a loss of peripheral vision, you could be developing glaucoma.
In healthy eyes, fluid drains from the front of the eye to support other eye tissue. This fluid exits the eye through an opening described as an “open-angle” channel.
Glaucoma is a range of diseases that occur when fluid doesn’t drain through the channel as it should.
If you are at high risk or have been diagnosed with glaucoma, it is important you are diligent about keeping your eye appointments to prevent further loss of vision. If you notice any changes in your vision, notify your eye doctor.
Glaucoma is sneaky. It can cause damage without obvious symptoms. Be aware of even slight vision changes, and notify your doctor.”
– Priscilla Bragg, Good Samaritan Society clinical services manager
If you’re worried about developing or worsening glaucoma, here are some tips:
An exam with your optometrist or eye care professional is the first step in learning about your eyes’ health.
Ask your provider to answer all your questions. If you don’t understand something, ask again and again until you have a clear grasp of the information. Your vision depends on your persistence.
If you have been diagnosed with glaucoma, learn about your type. There are different treatments for the different types. It is important you understand the pros and cons of the options for your type of glaucoma.
It is critical that you use your glaucoma medication exactly as ordered. Non-compliance with ordered medications is a leading cause of blindness from glaucoma.
Tell your family. Glaucoma is familial, and if one family member is diagnosed, the risk for others is higher.
Inform all of your healthcare providers about your glaucoma diagnosis and all medications you take. Some medications can decrease eye pressure, or interact with other drugs to become less effective or produce additional side effects.
Find out what your eye pressure is each time it’s tested. If it goes up or down significantly, you may want to check with a specialist to make sure you’re not developing glaucoma or at risk for other health problems.