What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is now the leading cause of blindness in the world, and there is no cure for it. Once glaucoma is discovered in a patient, there is no cure and the damage is permanent.
Glaucoma is described as being a group of eye diseases that work together to harm your optic nerves in your eye causing nerve damage. Doctors believe that in glaucoma, eye pressure is a determining factor in causing damage to the delicate nerve fibers of the optic nerve inside your eye.
Now once this fiber nerve damage occurs, and there is visual loss due to the damage, then this will be permanent. Most of the time, people aren’t aware that they have signs of glaucoma until the damage has reached the optic fibers and made their destruction.
Most people that get glaucoma are elderly and have had a series of eye diseases along the way. Getting early detection by a ophthalmologist is the key to preventing nerve damage and the effects of glaucoma.
What are the causes of Glaucoma?
While the ravage of glaucoma are not fully understood by doctors, the destruction of nerve damage are mainly caused be mechanical compression and also a decrease in the blood flow and oxygen to the optic nerve.
How Many Different Types of Glaucoma Are There?
There three main types of glaucoma are listed below and are the most common types.
This type of glaucoma is the most common type found in most elderly adults. The term “open” means that the part of the eye that is the drainage section, can become blocked which leads to an increase in eye pressure. If this type of eye pressure leads to optic nerve damage, then this status is known to be of a chronic nature. This type of optic nerve damage occurs slowly and painlessly and most who find out they have it are after the damaging effects have taken place.
This type of glaucoma occurs when the drainage part of the eye gets completely blocked and the iris may cause a serious eye pressure problem. When this section of the drainage gets totally blocked, then the eye pressure will build up very fast, and this is termed “acute angle-closure glaucoma. Some typical symptoms will include, headaches, severe eye pain, blurred vision and vomiting.
This is a rare genetic disorder that caused abnormalities at birth and one of them is glaucoma. Only 1 in 50,000 newborns will inherit this genetic disorder.
So What Are Some Warning Signs of Glaucoma?
Well the problem with eye diseases, is that many of the symptoms don’t show up until the nerve damage has already been done. There aren’t alot of warning signs, unfortunately that let you know that this damage is happening. There are however, many signs that should be looked at by a doctor should any of these occur.
- Trouble adjusting to dark rooms
- Squinting due to light or glare
- Change in iris color
- Recurring pain around eyes
- Dark spot int the center of viewing
- Excess watery eyes
- Seeing spots
So Who Would Be At Highest Risk For Glaucoma? How do you get glaucoma?
While this is not a all-encompassing rule, there are some common factors found in many glaucoma sufferers. These factors include:
- High eye pressure
- African heritage
- Thin Cornea
- A family genetic history of glaucoma
- Anemic shock
Can Glaucoma Be Cured?
In general, there is no cure for glaucoma but these days it can be controlled with very good results. Some treatments work at maintaining the progression of glaucoma like, eye drops, pills, laser procedures and some surgery. Regular eye examinations are key to keeping glaucoma under control.