Elder Care in Cranford NJ
As we age, we may notice a dramatic change in our vision; things that we used to see so clearly have suddenly become more difficult to view. Although there are several factors that can cause eyesight to deteriorate, one common eye disease that may be responsible is glaucoma. The Glaucoma Research Foundation defines this disease as “a complicated disease in which damage to the optic nerve results in vision loss.” Glaucoma may have no early signs to watch for and can develop slowly over several years, potentially resulting in becoming completely blind. The best form of prevention against this eye disease is by getting an annual eye exam in order to determine if glaucoma is present early on. However, if you or a loved one notices any of the following symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible to get the care needed to halt its development.
- Redness in the eye
- You see halos around lights
- Vomiting or feeling nauseous
- Feeling pain in the eye
- Loss of vision
- Tunnel vision, or narrowing of vision
- Hazy look in the eyes
During an eye exam, the doctor will dilate the pupils in order to focus on the optic nerve. Other tests that can be done to diagnose glaucoma include:
- Tonometry: The eye is numbed with anesthetic drops, followed by the use of a tonometer. This device is used to identify the pressure of the eye by measuring its firmness or tone.
- Gonioscopy: A special contact lens with mirrors on the eye’s surface is placed on the eye after being numbed with anesthetic drops. Abnormalities can be detected by studying the drainage angle and the eye’s drainage area.
- Visual field testing: Both early and late stages of glaucoma can be identified by using a computer to measure the visual fields of each eye. This is an excellent test to have done in order to find out how damaged the optic nerve is.
- Ophthalmoscopy: A head-mounted device, handheld device, or special lens is used by the doctor to look directly through the pupil. This test will observe the optic nerve in order to discover if it is damaged at all.
- Pachymetry: The tip of the pachymeter touches the cornea, or front surface of the eye, very lightly after the eye has been numbed with anesthetic drops. This test finds out the thickness of the cornea in order to determine whether the patient is at risk. A thinner cornea may be a risk factor.
The effects of glaucoma may be irreversible, but there are several ways it can be treated if detected early enough, including:
- Surgery: Laser surgery can be used to help increase the outflow of fluid from the eye or eliminate fluid blockage. Trabeculoplasty is a common form of laser surgery by using a laser to open up the trabecular meshwork drainage area. Trabeculectomy can also be used, which creates a new channel to drain fluid
- Eye drops: Eye drops can be used to reduce the amount of liquid in the front of the eye or increase its outflow.
The right treatment option is different for everyone, so talk to your doctor to find the perfect solution for you.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring elder care services near Cranford, NJ, call the caring staff at Helping Hands Home Care today at (908-418-4299).
Providing Home Care Services in all of Northern and Central NJ, including Clark, Westfield, Cranford, Scotch Plains, Rahway, Linden, Summit, Edison, Elizabeth, Mountainside and the surrounding areas.
Glaucoma Research Foundation. “What are the Symptoms of Glaucoma?”
WebMD. “Glaucoma and Your Eyes.”