The Lions Club of Tropical Gardens packed 254 pairs of eyeglasses for Lions International eyeglass recycling campaign last month.
The effort was part of Glaucoma awareness Month, which is recognised in January.
Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases in which the pressure inside the eye may or may not be elevated. This disease occurs when the normal fluid pressure inside the eyes slowly rises. Without treatment, people will slowly lose their side vision. Over time, straight-ahead vision may decrease until no vision remains. Glaucoma can develop in one or both eyes. The most common form of the disease is open angle glaucoma.
In open angle glaucoma the normal fluid pressure inside the eye progressively increases. With glaucoma, there are no initial symptoms. Vision stays normal, and there is no pain. However, as the disease progresses, a person with glaucoma may notice his or her side vision gradually failing. That is, objects in front may still be seen clearly, but objects to the side may be missed. As the disease worsens the field of vision narrows and blindness results. Detection comes from regular dilated pupil eye exams.
If glaucoma is detected and treated early, it usually can be controlled before severe vision loss occurs. Many people at high risk for glaucoma are unaware that they could be going blind.
Ask yourself the following questions and evaluate your “risk” for developing glaucoma.
1. Does your family have a history of glaucoma? Glaucoma is hereditary. If someone in your family has had glaucoma, please have your eyes examined.
2. Are you of retirement age? Anyone older than 60 is at risk for developing glaucoma
3. Are you lacking a regular source of health care? Individuals that do not regularly make appointments with a health care professional run the risk of ignoring the onset of glaucoma. Without a dilated pupil eye exam every two years, vague symptoms may go unnoticed until it’s too late and the disease has progressed to a severe stage. Many times, there are no symptoms in the early stages of the disease.
If you answered yes to any of the above questions you are at risk for developing glaucoma and should schedule a dilated pupil exam with your local eye doctor at least once every two years.
The club will continue to collect used eyeglasses through its ongoing programmes.