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National Glaucoma Awareness Month: How Elder Care Can Help

Jan 25, 2018 by Erin Couchell

Elder care professionals can help seniors maintain vision health through safe, reliable transportation to regular eye exams

The risk factors, symptoms, causes of and treatments for glaucoma do not get talked about often, but they are a major part of elder care. Whether or not your loved one gets their glaucoma treated on time and avoids going blind will undoubtedly greatly affect their quality of life. That is precisely why screening on an annual basis for this dangerous disease is paramount.

With help from an elder care provider, your loved one can make all doctor appointments and you can rest easy knowing they will be taking their glaucoma treatment should it turn out that they do have glaucoma. An elder care professional can also help your loved one recover from glaucoma surgery safely and in the comfort of their own home.

The Causes And Risk Factors

For the most part, glaucoma is caused by fluid build-up within the eye. This buildup occurs when fluid does not drain as it should from the eye. In turn, this causes very high pressure within the eye and consequently optic nerve damage over time. Age is a huge contributor to the development of glaucoma. Other risk factors may or may not include injury, steroid use, thin corneas, genetic predisposition, anemia, and nearsightedness. If not treated properly, glaucoma can lead to blindness.

Are There Any Symptoms?

There are five different types of glaucoma, but only one type, narrow-angle glaucoma, has symptoms outside of vision loss. Unfortunately, narrow-angle glaucoma constitutes a medical emergency and if your loved one notices any symptoms, they should be taken to the hospital immediately.

The symptoms can include severe eye pain, eye redness, nausea, vomiting, sudden blurred vision, and seeing halos around. In order to prevent emergency situations like this, it may be a good idea to look into elder care options in your loved one's area if they do not have a family caregiver.

What About Treatment?

The good news is that, if caught early, glaucoma can be treated with eye drops and even dietary changes. However, if that does not work, your loved one can undergo laser eye surgery, which is widely available and very safe these days. Cyclophotocoagulation, trabeculoplasty, and iridotomy are some of the types of laser surgeries available now that could help treat and cure glaucoma.


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