According to a 2011 study conducted by the Center for Disease Control, nearly 40% of adults over the age of 40 said they avoided the eye doctor last year. Of the 11,503 people surveyed, almost 35% said they believed they had healthy vision and didn’t feel they needed an eye exam.
Perhaps these individuals did not know that the majority of people suffering from glaucoma experience no symptoms until the eye disease has progressed. In fact, an individual can lose as much as 40% of their vision before even noticing a problem. This is why it is estimated that nearly half of the 2.2 million Americans affected by glaucoma are unaware that they even have the eye disease. And once a person begins to lose their vision, the damage is irreversible.
This is why regular eye exams are so important. With no cure, the best way to deal with glaucoma and preserve one’s vision is with early detection and regular treatment.
You are at an increased risk developing glaucoma if…
- You are of African, Asian, and Hispanic descent
- You are over the age of 60
- You have a family member who has already been diagnosed
- You are diabetic
- You are severely nearsighted (myopic)
While everyone should have their eyes examined regularly, those with the above risk factors should increase the frequencies of those examinations.
During your routine checkup, your eye doctor will not only evaluate your prescription for eyeglasses or contact lenses, but he/she will also inspect your eyes for common eye diseases, like glaucoma and cataracts, that could lead to vision loss.
Testing for Glaucoma
- Field Vision Tests evaluate both central and peripheral sight through a series of subjective examinations that measure the entire scope of an individual’s vision.
- The measurement of eye pressure (normal range 12-22).
- A close assessment of the optic nerve.
- A measurement of the cornea of the eye.
These tests are repeated once a year or more often if there is any concern about glaucoma risk or progression.
To learn more about Glaucoma, please contact board certified ophthalmologist Dr. Samuel Boles, consultative optometrist Dr. Nathan Frank, and the eye care specialists at Anne Arundel Eye Center by calling 410-224-2010 or click here to visit AnneArundelEyeCenter.com.
Located in Annapolis, Maryland, the Anne Arundel Eye Center offers comprehensive specialized ophthalmic exams as well as diagnostic pre and post-surgical eye care. Specializing in glaucoma and cataracts, Dr. Boles has helped restore and preserve thousands of patients’ vision. Vision problems may be a natural part of aging. Losing your vision doesn’t have to be.
For more eye care advice and information, please take a look at our previous blog posts.