Glaucoma is a frightening group of disorders that occur in the eye. When left untreated, they can eventually lead to total blindness.
What makes glaucoma so scary is that vision loss from it is permanent. It’s almost impossible to detect without outside help from an eye care professional.
In most cases, this occurs after vision loss has already happened. It is one of the best examples of why it is so important for you to schedule regular eye appointments every year.
You can avoid damage to your vision by scheduling a visit at Takle Eye in Griffin, GA today. Keep reading to find out more information about glaucoma!
How Does Glaucoma Work?
Unlike other eye problems that may affect the retina, the lens, or the cornea, glaucoma causes vision loss by damaging the optic nerve. The optic nerve handles delivering the information sensed by the retina to the brain. It is a series of fibers that form a sort of cable from the eye to the brain.
The damage that is caused to the optic nerve is usually due to having high internal eye pressure. If the fluids inside of the eye cannot cycle out as quickly as they should be able to, eye pressure rises.
This then presses on the optic nerve. How quickly the pressure rises depends on the type of glaucoma you are suffering from.
Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma
Primary open-angle glaucoma is the most common form of glaucoma. In this form of glaucoma, pressure increases in the eye slowly.
This is usually due to something clogging the drain meshwork inside of the eye. It allows for some fluid to drain, but at a much slower rate. This form of glaucoma is associated with the typical symptomless loss of vision.
Angle-closure glaucoma is a less common form of glaucoma. Unlike open-angle, angle-closure glaucoma has noticeable symptoms.
These can include pain and nausea and rapid deterioration of vision. It occurs when the drain meshwork becomes completely closed off. This causes a sharp spike in internal eye pressure.
This form of glaucoma is a medical emergency. If you notice any kind of sudden changes in your vision, seek medical aid immediately.
Glaucoma with Normal Eye Pressure
You can also have glaucoma while having expectedly normal internal eye pressure. This is also uncommon, but it is unclear why this happens.
It could be as simple as people having optic nerves that are weaker by nature. Researchers are still unsure of the exact reason.
Glaucoma Risk Factors
There are many things in play when determining how at risk for glaucoma you are.
Age, like many eye problems, plays a strong role in glaucoma risk. If you are over 60, you are at an increased risk of developing the disease.
Race and ethnicity are also common factors. People of African descent are the most at risk for glaucoma, and their age of increased risk is at 40.
Angle-closure glaucoma is found more frequently in people of Asian descent. Japanese heritage is also associated more strongly with normal-tension glaucoma.
Glaucoma is also hereditary to a degree, so if your family has a history with the disease, you will be more at risk.
Medical issues such as the use of corticosteroids, certain diseases such as diabetes, previous eye injuries or internal eye problems, and thin corneas all play a role in glaucoma risk.
Don’t live in fear of glaucoma, stay ahead of it with frequent eye care visits! Schedule an appointment at Takle Eye Group in Griffin, GA!