January is recognized as National Glaucoma Awareness Month. Glaucoma, often called “the sneak thief of sight,” is the leading cause of preventable blindness – there are no symptoms and vision loss is permanent. Dr. Randall L. Noblitt and Dr. Steven M. Wilson, John-Kenyon’s Medical Eye Care and Glaucoma Specialists, are sharing details about this common disease to raise awareness about glaucoma and encourage people to protect their vision through regular eye exams. Here are the facts:
- Glaucoma occurs when the eye’s drainage system fails to properly drain the fluid that nourishes the lens and cornea and removes unwanted debris from the eye. This extra fluid allows pressure to build in the eye. If not treated, the high pressure damages the optic nerve, resulting in permanent vision loss.
- Glaucoma is estimated to affect 1 of every 50 American adults – more than 3 million people in the United States. While glaucoma can affect anyone, those with a family history, African Americans over age 40 and anyone over the age of 60 are at a higher risk.
- Most symptoms of glaucoma go unnoticed because the build up of pressure is gradual and painless. People often do not detect a change in vision until substantial loss of sight has occurred. In most cases, glaucoma is detected during a routine eye examination before the patient experiences any vision problems. For this reason, regular eye exams are recommended. The evaluation for glaucoma is painless.
Dr. Noblitt, Dr. Wilson, and the team at John-Kenyon encourage adults to have an eye exam at least once a year. Frequent, comprehensive eye exams are the best protection against glaucoma, no matter what time of year. To schedule your exam today, call 1.800.DIAL.EYE or click here. If you or someone you know is suffering from glaucoma and you’d like to learn more about how we treat it, check out the glaucoma solutions available at John-Kenyon.