Comprehensive Eye Exams in Montgomery, AL

Celebrate Glaucoma Awareness Month with an Eye Exam

January is the time to make resolutions for the coming months and reset after a busy year, but it also is Glaucoma Awareness Month, a time to shine a light on one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness worldwide. Sometimes referred to as the ‘silent thief of sight,’ glaucoma can progress unnoticed until it significantly impacts vision. 

To celebrate Glaucoma Awareness Month, learn more about this stealthy eye condition with Clarkson Eyecare and stay proactive by completing regular eye exams. 

Understanding Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, a critical component for good vision. This damage is often caused by abnormally high pressure in your eye. Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness for people over the age of 60, but this blindness can often be prevented with early treatment. 

Types of Glaucoma

  • Open-Angle Glaucoma: This is the most common form. It happens gradually, where the eye does not drain fluid as well as it should, leading to eye pressure build-up and optic nerve damage. It’s so gradual that you may not notice a change in vision until the condition is at an advanced stage. 

  • Angle-Closure Glaucoma: Also known as closed-angle glaucoma, this type occurs when the iris is very close to the drainage angle in the eye. The iris can end up blocking the drainage angle. When the drainage angle gets completely blocked, eye pressure rises quickly, leading to a narrow-angle glaucoma or acute angle-closure glaucoma attack. 

Risk Factors and Common Symptoms

 Individuals who are over the age of 40, have a family history of the condition, have certain medical conditions like diabetes, or experience extreme nearsightedness are more at risk for developing glaucoma. While early stages typically have no pain or obvious symptoms, you may begin to notice a loss of peripheral vision, eye pain, tunnel or blurred vision, or halos around lights as the condition progresses. This can make it more difficult to navigate spaces, drive, read, and recognize faces, and without proper treatment, can lead to blindness. 

The Importance of Early Detection

The key to combating glaucoma lies in early detection. Detecting glaucoma in its initial stages is crucial because once vision loss occurs, it’s irreversible. Early detection can greatly slow down the progression of the disease, often preventing significant vision loss. By managing the condition early, through medications or surgical options, the impact on vision can be minimized, allowing you to maintain a higher quality of life and retain your independence for longer. 

Regular eye exams play a pivotal role in the early detection of glaucoma. During a comprehensive eye exam, optometrists at Clarkson Eyecare check for signs of glaucoma, such as high eye pressure, changes in the optic nerve, and vision field loss. By scheduling regular eye exams, particularly if you are at higher risk for glaucoma, you’re taking an essential step in protecting your vision. Early detection through these exams can lead to early intervention, which is essential in effectively managing the disease. 

Glaucoma Treatments and Management 

Glaucoma treatment focuses on lowering eye pressure to prevent further optic nerve damage. The approach depends on the type and severity of the glaucoma, but typically includes: 

  • Medication: Most commonly, treatment begins with prescription eye drops. These help decrease eye pressure, either by reducing the amount of aqueous fluid the eye makes or by improving its flow out of the eye. 

  • Laser Therapy: Procedures such as trabeculoplasty, iridotomy, or cyclophotocoagulation are used to improve drainage and reduce eye pressure. 

  • Surgery: In cases where medications and laser therapy are not sufficient, surgical procedures like trabeculectomy, or the installation of a drainage implant, may be recommended to create a new channel for fluid drainage. 

Beyond medical treatments, lifestyle changes can play an important role in managing glaucoma effectively. Some immediate changes you can make to reduce the impacts of glaucoma are: 

  • Regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight. 

  • A nutrient-rich diet, including antioxidants. 

  • Avoid activities that exacerbate eye pressure, such as heavy lifting or head-down yoga poses. 

  • Actively manage stress, as stress can increase eye pressure. 

How to Participate in Glaucoma Awareness Month 

The best way to celebrate Glaucoma Awareness Month is by scheduling an eye exam. Whether it’s for you or a loved one, an eye exam is a proactive step in detecting glaucoma early. Clarkson Eyecare supports you through this process, offering comprehensive eye exams that assess your eye health and screen for glaucoma. Remember, early detection is the key to preventing vision loss! Beyond monitoring your eye health, January is the perfect time to raise awareness about glaucoma and its impacts. Need some ideas to help you get started? Here are a few ways you can spread the word this month: 

  1. Social Media: Use platforms like Facebook, X (formerly known as Twitter), and Instagram to share facts about glaucoma, personal stories, or information about Glaucoma Awareness Month. Hashtags like #GlaucomaAwarenessMonth can help your messages reach a wider audience. 

  2. Community Involvement: Participate in or organize community events focused on eye health. This could include informational seminars, health fairs, or fundraising events for glaucoma research. 

  3. Educational Materials: Distribute educational materials in your local community centers, libraries, and schools. Simple brochures or posters can make a difference in spreading knowledge. 

  4. Have Open Discussions: Sometimes, a conversation can be a powerful tool. Talk to your friends, family, and colleagues about the importance of regular eye exams and the risks of glaucoma. 

Manage Glaucoma with Clarkson Eyecare

Optometrists are central to managing glaucoma, and at Clarkson Eyecare, our doctors work closely with patients to provide personalized care that meets their specific needs. If you are diagnosed with glaucoma, our optometrists can monitor the progression of the disease through regular check-ups, adjusting your treatment plan as necessary to minimize your symptoms.  

Additionally, with Clarkson Eyecare as your partner, you’re empowered to take an active role in managing your eye health. Through medical treatment and guidance on lifestyle changes and home care techniques, Clarkson Eyecare can ensure your glaucoma is manageable and doesn’t disrupt your daily life. To start the new year off on the right foot, schedule an appointment with your local Clarkson Eyecare and complete a comprehensive eye exam. 

Willoughby
Willoughby
Manchester
Wesley Chapel
Bricktown
Austell (EW Connector)
Sharpsburg
Downtown St. Louis
Southeast Novi
Vinings
Centerville
Clifton
Okemos
Northfield
The Spec Shoppe: St. Joseph
West Camino Del Sol
Navarre
Springhurst
Dearborn Heights
Farmington
West Chester Tylersville
Fairfield
Overland
Medina
Perry
Marysville
Warrenton
Town Street
Town & Country Crossing
Florissant Dunn Rd.
Bexley
Mason and Manchester
Ballwin
Alton
Pavilion Crossing
Haslett
Granite City Nameoki
New Albany
Columbia Broadway
Wentzville
Chesterfield
Shakopee
Alliance
Stonebrook
Independence Plaza
Woodlands
Legacy
Keller
Countryside
Tampa (Busch)
Elk River 
Brunswick
Shiloh
Maplewood
Trinity
Chanhassen
Three Rivers
Shepherdsville
Fern Creek
Bogey Hills
Ann Arbor on Main
Worthington
Ann Arbor Children's Clinic for Vision Enhancement
Elizabethtown
Woodbine
Lake St. Louis
Middleburg Heights
West Park
West Broad St.
South Columbus
Hilliard
Pontiac
Howell Township
Tecumseh
Ann Arbor Plymouth
Coventry
Mansfield
Grand River
Matawan
Pleasant Hill
Imperial
Edwardsville Club Center
Edwardsville Crossing
Clarksville
Union
Conyers
Lilburn
Anderson
Delta Township
Saline
Suwanee
West Chester Union Centre
Lake Ridge
Hazlet Plaza
Red Bank
Columbia Rock Bridge Red Oak
Jennings
Lakeland
Lebanon
Centralia
Wildwood
Pacific
Butler Hill
Arnold Park Mall
Valrico
Calvert City
Shea Boulevard
Affton
Berryhill
Snellville
Braselton
Ft. Mitchell
Paducah
Lone Oak
Virginia Beach
Perdido
Davis Highway
Alpharetta
Highland
Kenwood
Harrison
Lutz Sunlake Centre
Plant City North
Gulf Breeze
Nine Mile
Tesson Ferry
Telegraph Plaza
Creve Coeur
South County
St. Louis Hills
Central West End
South Grand
Milford
Mariemont
Loveland
Kettering
Blue Ash
Dublin
Reynoldsburg
Riverview
Downtown Columbus
Riverview Vision Performance Center
Eureka
O'Fallon South
94 Crossing
Arnold
79 Crossing
Franconia
Valley Station
141 & Olive
Chesterfield Valley
Collinsville
Columbia
Middletown
Festus
Beacon Center (Alexandria)
Fenton
Breese
Cold Spring
Lake Lansing Rd.
Western Hills
Florissant HWY 67
Kirkwood
North Lebanon
Benton
O'Fallon North
Mid Rivers
Bardstown
Sea Girt Mall
Eatontown
Wooster
Delaware
Kissimmee
Towncenter Plaza (Sterling)
Manassas
Fredericksburg
Westerville
Green
Mt. Orab
Morrow
Gahanna
Webster Groves
Washington
Troy
Rock Hill
Perryville
Maryland Heights
Clayton
High Ridge
Ellisville
Brentwood Pointe
Oxboro
Murray
Mayfield
Waterloo
Swansea
Mt. Vernon
Godfrey
Fairview Heights
Belleville
Miramar
Fort Walton