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The real impact of glaucoma
Don’t lose sight of the future!

With National Glaucoma Awareness Week having drawn to an end, it’s important to remind ourselves of the importance of regular sight tests and eye health check-ups.

In previous blogs we detailed the risks of glaucoma and why you should care, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the future!

In the UK, glaucoma is the most common cause of preventable blindness with usually up to 40% of sight is permanently lost before the effects are noticed as there are no early symptoms.

A regular sight test can diagnose and monitor eye conditions like glaucoma and prevent further permanent damage to vision as once sight is lost because of glaucoma, it cannot be recovered or reversed.

If left without treatment, people with glaucoma will slowly lose their peripheral (side) vision which results in people missing objects out of the corner of their eye or to the side. This is what’s known as tunnel vision.

Glaucoma can literally be life changing, but it’s still possible to do daily activities with small adaptations and make a world of difference to someone’s independence.

Driving is one of the biggest challenges in the early stages (while you can still drive) as loss of contrast sensitivity, light sensitivity and problems with glare are some of the possible effects of glaucoma that may interfere.

Glare and contrast can be reduced by avoiding driving at night or wearing sunglasses or tinted lenses.

Brown lenses can be useful for blocking out glare from fluorescent lights on a bright day, whereas yellow and amber lenses can be useful on overcast days or at night.

While these solutions may be disruptive or difficult to plan life around, it gives a person their independence for longer than they thought.

However, as glaucoma progresses, daily activities become more difficult because of the increasing loss of peripheral vision.

Over time, central vision (straight-ahead) may decrease until no vision remains.

Glaucoma can be diagnosed, monitored and treated earlier through regular eye health checks, minimising preventable sight loss and avoid extensive permanent damage to vision.

If glaucoma has been diagnosed in the family, close relatives are 4 times more likely to develop the condition than someone without a family history.

Glasses may also be beneficial to correct the vision of a person with glaucoma, ensuring that what they can see (even if a little) is suitable to help them live better.

So regular sight and eye health checks aren’t important just for those living with glaucoma, but also for their loved ones.

If you or your loved one could benefit from a sight test, contact us to see how we can help.