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Ask an Optometrist: What Is Glaucoma?
Making an appointment with an experienced optometrist is your next step when you are experiencing any problems with your eyes. Optometrists have spent many years earning a Doctor of Optometry degree. They are able to examine your eyes while looking for both vision and health problems. An optometrist can treat many different eye conditions and diseases.
What is glaucoma?
While there is plenty of online information about glaucoma that patients could look into, it is important to get information from a medical professional. This is the only way patients can be sure they have the correct information. According to Web MD, glaucoma is a condition that causes damage to one’s eyes optic nerves and gets worse over time. This damage is often caused by a buildup of pressure inside of the eye. This can lead to permanent vision loss if not treated in a timely manner.
What causes glaucoma?
Glaucoma is caused when the optic nerve begins to deteriorate. This deterioration will eventually lead to a buildup of pressure in the front part of the eye, aka high fluid pressure. While this fluid should naturally flow out of the eye, sometimes there is a blockage that causes this liquid to accumulate. Additional causes include experiencing an injury to the eye, being diagnosed with an eye infection or with an inflammatory-based condition and clogged blood vessels.
Two main types of glaucoma
There are two main types of glaucoma — open-angle and angle-closure. Open-angle glaucoma, also known as wide-angle glaucoma, is the more common type. While the eye may look like nothing is wrong, when someone is diagnosed with this type of glaucoma, it means that the fluid is not flowing out properly. Angle-closure glaucoma is also known as chronic angle-closure, acute glaucoma and narrow-angle glaucoma. This type means that the fluid cannot flow as it should because the iris and cornea are too narrow.
Common symptoms of glaucoma
The fact that glaucoma tends to show up in one’s later years and does not display early symptoms is why it is so essential for everyone to make regular appointments for eye exams. Symptoms that show an immediate trip to see an optometrist is needed include any eye redness, eye pain and tunnel vision. Also, seeing halos, experiencing any nausea and any loss of vision, no matter how small.
Common treatment options for glaucoma
Common treatment options include using eye drops to reduce the amount of fluid in the eyes, laser surgery to help improve the flow of eye fluids and microsurgery, which means creating a new path for the fluids to escape.
Do you need to schedule an eye exam?
If you need an eye examination with your optometrist, especially if you are currently experiencing eye problems, today is the day for you to take action. When your eyes are giving you problems, it really is essential that you find out what is going on as soon as possible. When eye problems are caught in their beginning stages, they are much easier to treat. Ready to make a consultation appointment to learn more about glaucoma?
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