Glaucoma: 10 Facts Everyone Should Know

January is Glaucoma Awareness month and it serves as an important reminder to learn more about this devastating disease.

Here are 10 key facts about Glaucoma:

  1. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide – an estimated 3 million Americans suffer from the disease.
  2. Glaucoma is not a single eye disease – it is made up of several conditions which affect the optic nerve and can lead to blindness.
  3. There are several types of Glaucoma – the most common are open-angle and angle-closure.
  4. Glaucoma often goes undetected until the disease is in advanced stages – often the disease begins with no pain or symptoms. An individual may not suspect they have an issue until they suffer from vision loss.
  5. Family history plays a role in Glaucoma risk – having a family history of Glaucoma increases your risk of developing the disease.
  6.  Intraocular pressure is the largest risk for Glaucoma – this occurs when the pressure within the eye increases and can only be detected as part of an annual eye exam.
  7. Glaucoma risk increases with age – individuals over the age of 40 are more likely to develop the disease.
  8. An annual comprehensive eye exam is the best way to detect Glaucoma – the disease have no early symptoms and is often called the “thief of sight”. An annual eye exam is the only way to detect the disease in its early stages.
  9.  Everyone is at risk for Glaucoma – while Glaucoma is typically associated with older age, it can affect anyone at any age.
  10.  There is no cure for Glaucoma – there is currently no cure for Glaucoma or way to restore vision lost to the disease. Early detection is key in the preservation of eyesight.