Glaucoma is an eye disease that is characterized by progressive and permanent damage to the optic nerve of the eye. The optic nerve contains the cells of the eye that help us see. When the optic nerve becomes damaged, vision begins to decline making it more difficult to see, walk, and drive. Once there is damage to the optic nerve it is unable to be reversed. Glasses and contact lenses are unable to restore vision that is lost from glaucoma.
Glaucoma does not have symptoms until it is in severe stages. In the early stages of glaucoma there are no symptoms, no pain, no change in vision, and no eye irritation. Once glaucoma causes symptoms, those symptoms cannot be reversed because the damage to the optic nerve is permanent and irreversible. Symptoms of severe glaucoma include:
Loss of vision
Missing vision, especially the peripheral parts of vision
Constantly blurred vision
Only your eye doctor can determine if you have glaucoma. Because glaucoma does not present with symptoms in the early stages, you will never know if you have it. Your eye doctor will measure eye pressure and perform optic nerve ultrasonography and peripheral visual field testing if you have signs of glaucoma.
Glaucoma is treated with eye drops, laser procedures, or surgery. It is important to know that glaucoma cannot be cured at this time.