What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a disease that damages the optic nerve and is a common cause of blindness in individuals over 60 years. The eye has a drainage angle whereby aqueous humor drains out. The exact amount of fluid that flows into your eye should drain out to maintain the intraocular pressure. Poor functioning of the drainage angle causes fluid retention, which increases pressure in your eye, damaging the optic nerve. Although glaucoma usually presents no symptoms during the early stages, ophthalmology in Jacksonville, FL, services can help detect early signs of damage to the optic nerve. Here are different types of glaucoma.

Open-angle glaucoma

It is the most common form of glaucoma, which gradually develops when the eye does not drain fluid as it should. For open-angle glaucoma, the trabecular meshwork remains partially blocked as the drainage angle formed by the cornea and iris remains open. Due to poor fluid drainage, pressure gradually builds up in the eye, eventually damaging the optic nerve. The damage happens so slowly that you can hardly notice any changes, but you can lose sight without establishing the problem. For this reason, regular eye examinations are essential to check for early signs of damage to the optic nerve. Open-angle glaucoma is painless and usually causes no vision changes during its onset stages.

Angle-closure glaucoma

Angle-closure glaucoma occurs when the iris bulges forward to the drainage angle in your eye. When this happens, it affects fluid circulation in the eye, causing a steady rise in pressure which damages the optic nerve. People with an iris close to the eye drainage are at risk of this type of glaucoma. Most of the time, angle-closure glaucoma develops gradually, causing no signs and symptoms. However, some people may have an attack which is a medical emergency. Symptoms of angle-closure glaucoma attack include nausea, vomiting, headache, sudden blurry vision, severe eye pain, and seeing halos around lights.

Normal-tension glaucoma

For normal-tension glaucoma, your eye pressure is within the normal range, but still, the optic nerve becomes damaged. Experts are yet to establish the cause of normal-tension glaucoma. Inadequate blood supply to the optic nerve may result in this problem. Insufficient blood flow could result from the accumulation of fatty deposits in arteries. Individuals with a sensitive optic nerve could also develop normal-tension glaucoma.

How can I prevent glaucoma?

The following self-care steps can help you detect glaucoma in its early stages before you lose your vision.


Moderate exercise can help you reduce and regulate eye pressure. Your doctor may recommend suitable exercises to reduce eye pressure.

Get a regular eye examination

Your ophthalmologist can detect signs of early damage to your optic nerve before significant damage occurs. Experts recommend screening every five to ten years for individuals below 40 years. People between the ages of 40 to 54 should get their eyes examined after every two to four years and every one to two years for older adults above 65 years.

People at risk of glaucoma need frequent screening than other individuals. Your doctor may recommend a suitable screening schedule for you.

Use eye drops as prescribed

Glaucoma eye drops reduce the risk of eye pressure progressing to glaucoma. You should use eye drops as your doctor prescribes, even if you have no symptoms.

Reserve a session with your specialist today at Wolchok Eye Associates, PA, for your routine eye examination.