National Glaucoma Awareness Week seeks to raise awareness of glaucoma and encourage everyone to go for regular sight tests (at least every 2 years).
The International Glaucoma Association is the charity for people with glaucoma, with the mission to raise awareness of glaucoma, promote research related to early diagnosis and treatment and to provide support to patients and all those who care for them.
Why should you have regular sight tests?
Did you know that thanks to a simple eye test, your optometrist, in the high street, could not only pick up eye conditions such as Glaucoma, Cataract, Macula Degeneration, Dry Eye and Inflammation of the cornea, but they could also detect the signs of other conditions including: Diabetes, Hypertension, Thyroidtoxicosis, Auto Immune disorders, Pituitary tumours, Raised cholesterol, Shingles and many other eye conditions that are often asymptomatic?
Are you at risk of Glaucoma?
- Are you over 40?
- Do you have a family history of glaucoma?
- Are you short sighted?
- Are you of African-Caribbean origin?
If the answer is yes to any of these questions, then you are at increased risk and should definitely have your eyes tested regularly (at least every 2 years).
What is Glaucoma?
There are various types of glaucoma but primary open angle glaucoma (POAG), also known as chronic glaucoma, is the most common. It has no symptoms in the early stages, but slowly and painlessly destroys sight if it is not detected and treated. The loss of vision cannot be reversed. It mainly affects middle aged and elderly people, although it can develop in younger people. The earlier glaucoma is detected, the more successful the treatment.
Even if you seem to have excellent sight, this doesn’t rule out glaucoma because:
- Glaucoma initially destroys the off-centre vision, leaving the central detailed vision unaffected until a later stage.
- Blank patches in the field of vision may go unnoticed as the less affected eye ‘completes the picture’.
- Glaucoma does not affect the ability of the eye to focus and the condition may be present even though vision seems fine without the need for glasses.
You could lose up to 40% of your sight irretrievably before you are aware of any problem.
Don’t be a statistic – give yourself peace of mind. Arrange an eye test today! You can book a free eye test at Aston University Optometry Clinic by calling ext 3900.
Find out more about the Optometry Clinic.