Currently, more than 2.6 million people in the U.S. over 40 have glaucoma. Many glaucoma cases remain undiagnosed because so many people neglect to receive a yearly eye examination that includes simple tests to determine whether glaucoma is affecting their eyes. According to the National Eye Institute, the number of people with glaucoma will double by 2030, making glaucoma the #1 cause of preventable blindness.
Glaucoma Awareness Month
By designating January as National Glaucoma Awareness month, the Glaucoma Research Foundation is hoping to attract attention to a disease that literally “steals” your sight without producing any immediately discernible symptoms. In addition, vision lost to glaucoma is permanent. Opthalmalogists report that you could lose nearly 40 percent of your vision to glaucoma and not even notice it because the loss is so gradual and subtle.
Preventing an Epidemic of Blindness
With over 55 million people worldwide suffering from undiagnosed glaucoma and a population that is rapidly aging, experts suggest that we may be dealing with a “blindness epidemic” within the next decade. Raising awareness about the dangers of glaucoma is essential to preserving vision and preventing blindness, especially when an estimated five million people are legally blind due to undiagnosed and untreated glaucoma.
You Can Help Raise Awareness This January
The Glaucoma Research Foundation asks that you help them prevent glaucoma-related blindness by talking to family and friends about glaucoma along with the importance of visiting their eye doctor annually for a complete examination. You can also refer them to the Glaucoma Research Foundation’swebsite to request free educational booklets that provide news about glaucoma research and treatments.
Although a cure for glaucoma has not yet been discovered, medications and non-invasive laser surgeries may help delay vision loss once glaucoma is detected. Early detection remains the most effective method for preventing vision loss due to glaucoma. Call us today at Lone Star Vision to make an appointment for a complete eye examination and glaucoma test.