The eye disease glaucoma is aptly described as the “Silent Thief of Sight.” Since the symptoms of glaucoma are often invisible until it is too late and irreversible once they occur, knowing if you are at a high risk for it can help you prevent any potential vision loss. The best step you can take for your eye health is to have your eyes routinely checked by your eye care professional. Between check ups, here are some things to look (wink wink) for.
Signs of damage
You may not notice the signs of glaucoma at first because it typically develops slowly over time. Before you know it, your range of vision has decreased. However, sometimes it can come on quickly. But, in both cases, there are no early onset warning signs.
If your vision has become increasingly hazy, if you are seeing halos around lights or are losing your peripheral vision, you should see your eye doctor as soon as possible. These signs are not often noticed by an individual until the disease has progressed. Other signs like elevated intraocular pressure, abnormalities with optic nerves, as well as other various symptoms, are only able to be identified by your eye doctor, which is why it’s important to have a routine checkup.
Once the damage is done, there is no correcting your vision. This is yet another reason why it is imperative to have your eyes checked. Catching a glaucoma sooner rather than later can ensure better treatment options. Spotting glaucoma and preventing it is key to maintaining your vision.
Since there are no warning signs, being proactive and watchful (no pun intended) can be helpful in managing and preventing any future damage that may occur if left unchecked. Additionally, knowing if you are at a predisposed high risk for glaucoma can help you to be more aware of this disease and the chances of it happening to you.
So, who is at a high risk for glaucoma?
African Americans - females have the highest chance of developing a glaucoma.
Hispanics and Latinos
Those over the age of 50
Those with a family history of glaucoma
Those with diabetes
Those who have had eye injuries
Everyone is at risk for glaucoma, but if you fall into this list, know that your chances of developing glaucoma are higher and be mindful to have regular visits with your eye doctor.
Remember, there are no symptoms of glaucoma at first, the disease will continue to get worse unless treated. Once you lose vision to glaucoma, it cannot be regained, which is why you should have regular eye exams.
Sign up for one of our FREE glaucoma screenings during the month of February at any of our locations.
Bryant - January 15-February 12
Pine Bluff - February 2
Little Rock - February 7
Hot Springs - February 12