Are you at High Risk from Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is an eye condition that can affect anyone.  Certain groups, however, are more at risk from the condition than others.  Factors such as ethnicity and age come into the equation, and some types of the condition are hereditary.

Glaucoma takes certain forms and different groups are affected by the different types of glaucoma.  This post highlights the groups who are more prone to the condition.

glaucoma-eye-condition
There are many types of glaucoma and different groups are vulnerable to them

Hereditary

Glaucoma is a hereditary condition in its most common form, primary open angle glaucoma.  So if you have family members with glaucoma, you’re at higher risk of devleoping it.  It is estimated that you can be up to nine times more likely to suffer with glaucoma under these circumstances

Age

If you are over sixty, experts believe that you are five times more likely to contract Glaucoma.

Asian Descent

If you are of Asian descent then you are at more risk of contracting angle-closure glaucoma.  This type of glaucoma accounts for less than 10% of all cases of glaucoma.  If you are of Japanese descent you are a higher risk of normal tension glaucoma.

Suffered an Eye Injury?

Eye injuries tend to be a cause of glaucoma.  The condition can onset straight away or it can manifest years later.

Eye injuries which involve bruising or penetration can lead to traumatic glaucoma.  This often occurs from sports such as boxing or being hit with a cricket ball.

Use Steroids?

There is some evidence that steroid users are more prone to contracting glaucoma.  A 1997 study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that there was a 40% increase in incidence of ocular hypertension and open-angle glaucoma in adults who require between 14 – 35 puffs of steroid inhaler to control their asthma.  If you have severe asthma you may need this amount to control it.

Other Factors

Other factors which may make you prone to glaucoma include

  • Central corneal thickness less than .5mm
  • Hypertension
  • High myopia (nearsightedness)

Concerned About Glaucoma?

If you are concerned about glaucoma and feel you fit into a high-risk category ensure you undergo a complete eye examination, including eye dilation every year.

To get this started, click here and schedule an appointment with your local branch.

Top Tips to Protect your Eyes from the Sun

Protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays

Although it is great to get out in the sun, especially if you live in a country which doesn’t see much of it, there are risks to your eyes. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays are a known cause of cancer, growths on the eye, and cataracts. If you spend a lot of time outdoors the risk increases.

Senior couple at sea
It is important we protect our eyes from the sun

If you like to spend time on the piste, your vision is also at risk from damage caused by snow blindness. So what can we do to protect our eyesight from UV rays?

Useful Facts to Remember about UV Eye Damage

• UV damage is persistent regardless of whether the sun is shining in the sky. Clouds do not protect against UV rays and neither does a thin haze
• Always wear eye protection, even in the winter. UV sunglasses are a good choice as is a broad-brimmed hat
• Looking directly at the sun will result in solar retinopathy. This is when solar radiation damages your retina. This happens even if the sun is partially obscured during an eclipse
• Every time you are outside your eyes are taking damage unless you have some kind of eye protection. Cancer and cataracts may take time to develop, but the chances of contracting these conditions increases with exposure to the sun
• Children are particularly vulnerable and should be protected from the sun when outside regardless of the weather

Being Outside Not all Bad News

Research suggests that being outside reduces the chances of nearsightedness in children. In China, nearly every child is nearsighted, and research strongly suggests that it is because they spend a long time inside studying.
Given that exercise has been shown to be good for your eyes, exercising outside is a good way of keeping nearsightedness at bay as well as keeping your weight and your body healthy.

UV Light Good for Regulating Sleep Patterns

UV light has been shown that it helps to regulate our sleep patterns. When you sleep your eyes are busy clearing out irritants so we’re fresh for the next day. New research suggests that light-sensitive cells in the eye regulate our sleep patterns. As we get older our sleep patterns become more erratic and insomnia becomes common. Therefore, a blast of daylight will help us sleep at night.

If you would like further information on protecting your eyes from the sun please contact us.