Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness in those over 60 worldwide. Glaucoma causes increased pressure inside your eye which can damage your optic nerve. It’s essential to recognize the signs and symptoms of glaucoma so that you can get treatment as soon as possible.
What is glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, which connects your eye to the brain. The optic nerve carries visual information from the retina (the light-sensitive tissue at the back of your eye) to your brain. Without treatment, glaucoma can cause permanent vision loss. It’s the most common cause of blindness in adults and can affect anyone at any age.
Symptoms of glaucoma include:
- Seeing halos around lights (the classic “glow around the edges” effect)
- Blurred vision or trouble seeing at night
- A loss of vision through little spots in your field of vision
What causes glaucoma?
There are two types of glaucoma: open-angle and closed-angle. Open-angle refers to when fluid builds up in front of but not behind the iris (the colored part of your eye), causing increased pressure inside your eye. Closed-angle is when there’s too much liquid in front AND behind your iris; this causes decreased blood flow through small veins near where they meet at an angle where there is no drainage. This becomes a medical emergency within hours of occurring.
In most cases, there are no symptoms until significant damage has been done to one’s sight–which means that many individuals may not realize their condition until much later than necessary for treatment purposes.
What are the symptoms of glaucoma?
The symptoms of glaucoma are not always obvious, but they can be. Glaucoma causes a cloudy-looking cornea and an abnormal amount of halos around lights. If you have glaucoma, you might notice that your vision gets blurry or indistinct at night, called “halos.” Halos occur when the fluid pressure in your eye increases so much that it affects the retina’s ability to properly transmit images to the brain.
If you have any of these symptoms, have noticed them before, or if any close family members have had them, it’s essential to get tested for glaucoma immediately.
What are the risks of glaucoma?
Glaucoma can increase your risk of blindness because it damages the optic nerve. The optic nerve is a bundle of nerve fibers that connects your eye to your brain, transmitting visual information from the retina to the brain.
If glaucoma damages this connection, it can cause vision loss and eventually lead to blindness if left untreated. Glaucoma causes damage by increasing pressure inside the eye (intraocular pressure), which puts stress on both healthy and damaged portions of your optic nerve – and may even cause further damage as it progresses.
Glaucoma is a serious eye disease that can lead to blindness if not treated in time. Although there are few symptoms in the early stages of glaucoma, you can watch for warning signs and get checked by an eye doctor immediately if they occur. Glaucoma can be treated easily if caught early, so understanding what it looks like can help you find treatment for yourself or loved ones before things become too advanced.