Known as the ‘silent thief of sight’, Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that can affect anyone without any prior symptoms and it is known to be one of the leading causes of blindness.
So, what IS Glaucoma? It is the process when there’s a high fluid pressure within your eyes, damaging fragile fibers that is surrounding the optic nerve. The optic nerve plays an important role in our sight, being the main bridge between our eyes and brain, it relays different multiple visual imprints through each second. Damage to your optic nerve tends be permanent and irreversible. This leads to blurred vision and over time causes loss of vision entirely.
The cause of Glaucoma is related to the plasma fluid within our eyes, called the aqueous humor. When there’s an imbalance between the production and drainage of the aqueous humor it causes built up of the fluid inside the eye, which increases the pressure levels in the eye. This damage the optic nerve causing black patches to appear and hinder your vision. Depending on the way it is drained, this leads either to Primary open angle Glaucoma or Acute angle closure Glaucoma.
Primary open angle Glaucoma is the process of fluid leaving the eye at a progressively slower rate though the drainage chamber is open.
Acute angle closure Glaucoma is the instance of the drainage chamber being closed and fluid is unable to leave, building up pressure in the eye.
Like its infamous name ‘silent thief of sight’, Glaucoma does not present any prior symptoms before it actually happens. Causing many not to realise till it is too late. When contracted, symptoms such as severe pain in the eyes, decreased of vision, headaches, nausea and more, occurs. Causing many to panic and worry.
We do not know when we might contract Glaucoma and it is useful to understand the different risks behind it to prevent before it is too late. Age is an important factor as many are liable to contract Glaucoma above the age of 50. Also, chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure, eye injuries, use of steroids and hereditary all too play a role in causing Glaucoma to occur. It is important for everyone to seek eye checkups once in a while to be able to diagnose Glaucoma early in cases when it happens.