Glaucoma Awareness Month takes place every January, so it’s a great time to inform you about how this disease can affect you as you age.  According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, one in three individuals suffers from some form of vision-reducing eye disease by the age of 65.  In one of our previous blogs, FirstLantic explained the most common causes of vision loss, but in this blog, we concentrate specifically on glaucoma. Take our short quiz to test your knowledge.  You can find the answers below the quiz.


1. True or False Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve.


2. True or False Glaucoma only affects people over the age of 60.


3. Approximately how many Americans have glaucoma?

A. 500,000

B. 1,000,000

C. 3,000,000

D. 5,000,000


4. True or False. In the U.S., more than 120,000 are blind from glaucoma.


5. What is the most common form of glaucoma?

A. Open-angle

B. Acute angle-closure

C. Normal-tension


6. True or False. There is nothing you can do to prevent glaucoma.


7. True or False. People with diabetes are 2 times more likely to get glaucoma than people without diabetes.


8. True or False. Caucasians are 6 to 8 times more likely to get glaucoma than African-Americans.


 9. What percentage of people have glaucoma and don’t know they have the disease?

A. 10%

B. 20%

C. 50%

D. 60%


10. If you are exhibiting no symptoms and no changes in your eyesight, how often should you have an eye exam?

A. Every six months

B. Once per year

C. Every two years

D. Only when you experience a problem



Answers below:


  1. True. It is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve. The optic nerve sends visual information from your eye to your brain and is vital for good vision. Damage to the optic nerve is often related to high pressure in your eye. But glaucoma can happen even with normal eye pressure.
  2. False. While the disease is more common in people over the age of 60, it can occur at any age.
  3. The answer is C. About 3 million Americans have the disease and it is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide.
  4. True. In the U.S., more than 120,000 are blind from the disease, accounting for 9% to 12% of all cases of blindness.
  5. The answer is A. The most common form is open-angle which results in increased eye pressure. There are often no early symptoms which is why it is important to get regular eye exams.
  6. False. While there is no cure, there are preventative measures that you can take which will help you avoid vision loss, such as maintaining a healthy weight, controlling your blood pressure, being physically active, and avoiding smoking. These healthy behaviors will also help prevent type 2 diabetes and other chronic conditions.
  7. True. People with diabetes are twice as likely to get the disease as those without diabetes.
  8. False. African Americans are actually 6 to 8 times more likely to get the disease than Caucasians, and it can start as early as age 40.
  9. The answer is C. Open-angle, the most common form, often has no early symptoms, which is why 50% of people don’t know they have the disease.
  10. The answer is B. Annual eye exams are critical for catching early warning signs — especially when no noticeable physical symptoms are present. Even if you are not in a high-risk group, getting a comprehensive dilated eye exam by the age of 40 can help you catch glaucoma and other eye diseases early. It’s also important to see your general physician regularly to check for diseases that can cause eyesight problems, such as diabetes which can lead to diabetic retinopathy.


Our eyesight is one of our most precious gifts so don’t ignore it. The most important thing is to be aware of changes and address them with an eye care professional as soon as possible.


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