January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month, an important time to spread the word about this sight-stealing disease.
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that gradually steal sight without warning. Although the most common forms primarily affect the middle-aged and the elderly, glaucoma can affect people of all ages.
Vision loss is caused by damage to the optic nerve. There is no cure for glaucoma—yet. However, medication or surgery can slow or prevent further vision loss. Early detection is vital to stopping the progress of the 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.
Glaucoma is called "the sneak thief of sight" since there are no symptoms and once vision is lost, it's permanent. As much as 40% of vision can be lost without a person noticing.
Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness. Over 3 million Americans, and over 60 million people worldwide, have glaucoma. Experts estimate that half of them don't know they have it. Combined with our aging population, an epidemic of blindness may be looming if we don't raise awareness about the importance of regular eye examinations to preserve vision.
Carolina SeniorCare PACE has a medical team on staff to assist with your care. Carolina SeniorCare located at 802 East Center Street, Lexington, NC serves seniors in Davidson, Rowan, Davie and Iredell counties. Visit our website at www.carolinaseniorcare.org. Carolina SeniorCare is under the sponsorship of United Church Homes and Services (UCHS), a not-for-profit ministry offering senior housing and services for nearly 50 years, located in Newton, NC.
Excerpts from: www.glaucoma.org