What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma comes from too much pressure inside the eye. It can make people blind. There is good medicine for people who have glaucoma. Most people who have glaucoma do not become blind.

What causes glaucoma?

Water flows into and out of the eye to keep it clean inside. The water makes the shape of the eye round. If the water gets stopped from going out of the eye, the eye gets too full. The stopped-up water presses the optic nerve. The job of the optic nerve is to send vision to the brain. When the optic nerve is pressed, it stops working. No vision gets to the brain.

Sometimes people have a problem with their eyes before they get glaucoma. Glaucoma may come with the old problem. Then the people have two eye problems.

At first glaucoma does not hurt. Doctors test people's eyes to find out if they have glaucoma. They blow a puff of air on the eye to see if it has too much water pressing inside it. The doctors may want to help the people go to sleep before they do the test. They can give them sleeping medicine. People want to know if they have glaucoma. The doctor can fix it before it starts to hurt.

What kind of vision do people have who have glaucoma?

People who have glaucoma often lose their side vision. They may bump into things they do not see at the side or below. They have a hard time seeing at night or in dim lighting.

People who have glaucoma may not like bright light. It hurts their eyes. It makes it hard to see.
Sometimes the vision of people who have glaucoma changes. They can see at one time, and they cannot see at another time.
If people who have glaucoma have pain in their eyes, they need to go to the doctor soon. The doctor may help them with medicine.

What will help you if you have glaucoma?

  1. Medicine will help you if you have glaucoma. If your eyes hurt, tell your teacher or parents to tell the doctor right away.
  2. If sun hurts your eyes, wear a hat and sunglasses. If light makes it hard to see, be sure to sit where the light is behind you or next to you. Try to get lights that you can make bright or dim yourself.
  3. It may help you see things if the background is plain. If you want to see something dark, have a light background. If you want to see something light, have a dark background.
  4. Make things look bigger. The easy way to make things look bigger is to move them close to you or move yourself close to them. Use a bookstand to hold your book so that you can sit up to look at it up close. Maybe a magnifier will help you see things close to you. You can make print and pictures bigger on the computer or with a copy machine. A CCTV may help you see things. A monocular telescope may help you see things in the distance.

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