What is Glaucoma? Glaucoma is a disease where our eyes do not drain adequately, causing a buildup of fluid and creating high pressure behind our eyes. This pressure slowly damages our optic nerve (a vital part of our eyes that transfers images to our brain). Age, genetics, and certain medical conditions typically cause glaucoma however, your anatomy may simply be more sensitive to the natural pressures in the eyes which is why it is important to get screened for this disease each year.
Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in America due to it having little to no early warning signs. Once the disease develops, irreversible blind spots may occur in your peripheral vision. Before this irreversible damage occurs, the only way to monitor glaucoma is coming in for comprehensive eye exams that check eye pressure (typically this is the puff of air however, Black Diamond Eye Care uses less surprising and more accurate options for our patients). This allows your doctor to detect this slow moving disease as early as possible. The sooner this disease is detected, the sooner your doctor can get you on a regimen of eye drops or in for surgery- both of which will control the progression of blind spots.
On occasion, glaucoma can cause a sudden blockage in the fluid drainage part our eyes. This blockage is severe and you should call an ophthalmologist right away.
Symptoms of a sudden blockage include:
- Vision is suddenly blurry
- Severe eye pain
- Rainbow-colored rings or halos around lights in vision
Remember, eyes exams are not just for checking changes in sight. They are also a way to maintain preventative care and monitor the overall health of our eyes. Click HERE to schedule your yearly visit with one of our skilled doctors.
If you would like to learn more about glaucoma from the American Optometrist Association, click HERE.