With the aim to educate people about how to assess their risk for glaucoma and to be aware of the importance of regular eye exams and early detection, World Glaucoma Week is conducted on a global scale. This year World Glaucoma Week is being heldfrom 8th to 14thMarch 2015 to raise awareness about glaucoma, what it does to sight, and how it might affect you. This is an annual event to increase awareness about the eye disease glaucoma. Throughout the world, eye hospitals and organizations carry out events to promote glaucoma awareness. The term “glaucoma” refers to a group of disorders that damage the ocular nerve leading to irreversible vision loss and blindness. Glaucoma is most commonly caused by ocular hypertension i.e. build-up of high pressure inside the eye.
Let’s look at some facts to understand the seriousness of the situation. Considering all other factors, Glaucoma holds the position of second largest cause of blindness worldwide. Glaucoma, known as “Sneak thief of sight” is characterized by a gradual loss of vision resulting from damage of the optic nerve, which transmits visual images to the brain. As the optic nerve becomes irreversible damaged, permanent vision loss and blindness can occur.
Prevention and Cure
Early detection is the key to treat and halt the effects of glaucoma, but current worldwide estimates reveal that more than half of people suffering from glaucoma do not even realize that they have the disease. There are no early symptoms and it isn’t until the condition is fairly advanced that people recognize that there is something wrong with their vision. Once vision is lost, it cannot be recovered.Hence, regular eye exams are encouraged as a preventive measure. People above 40 years of age, having family history of glaucoma; those suffering from diabetes and hypertension, short sighted vision etc. must get themselvesscreened for glaucoma. Early detection and proper treatment are the only way to prevent blindness due to glaucoma.
Prevention and precaution will go hand in hand while fighting Glaucoma. If you would like more information about Glaucoma, make sure to ask your eye doctor for the precautions and measures which should be adopted for better eye care.
*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.