January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month

An important time to spread the word about this sight-stealing disease.

 

Currently, more than 3 million people in the United States have glaucoma. The National Eye Institute projects this number will reach 4.2 million by 2030, a 58 percent increase.

In the United States, approximately 120,000 are blind from glaucoma, accounting for 9% to 12% of all cases of blindness. Here are three ways you can help raise awareness:

Help Raise Awareness

  1. Talk to friends and family about glaucoma. If you have glaucoma, don’t keep it a secret. Let your family members know.
  2. Refer a friend to our web site, www.glaucoma.org.
  3. Request to have a free educational booklet sent to you or a friend.
  4. Get involved in your community through fundraisers, information sessions, group discussions, inviting expert speakers, and more (Glaucoma.org, 2016).

 

What is glaucoma?

Visual loss from glaucoma results from characteristic deterioration of the optic nerve leading to progressive loss of the field of vision. At least 3 million Americans suffer from glaucoma. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of adult blindness, and it is also the leading cause of preventable blindness. Most people who go blind from glaucoma are blind in at least one eye at the time of original detection, which points to the need for better early diagnosis. Because glaucoma usually does not manifest any symptoms until extensive peripheral visual loss becomes apparent in the final stages of the disease, it is often likened to the “sneak thief of sight.” Unlike most eye diseases, most varieties of glaucoma are chronic, virtually lifelong disorders than can be controlled but not cured. Like diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, or arthritis, glaucoma requires some modification in lifestyle, such as compliance with medical regimens, regular physician visits, and acknowledgment of the disease to achieve successful treatment (Cioffi & Van Buskirk, 2016).
Connect with us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for regular updates on glaucoma research, treatments, news and information. Share information about glaucoma with your friends and family. For more information visit www.glaucoma.org/news/glaucoma-awareness-month.php

References

Cioffi, G. A., & Van Buskirk, E.M. (2016). Glaucoma Basics & Frequently Asked Questions. American Glaucoma Society (AGS). Retrieved from: http://www.americanglaucomasociety.net/patients/faqs#A1

Glaucoma.org (2016). January is Glaucoma Awareness Month. Retrieved from: http://www.glaucoma.org/news/glaucoma-awareness-month.php

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