Life After Diagnosis
The most important thing to do is to keep your regular appointments and follow your doctor’s instructions. Except for a few types of glaucoma, the tendency for glaucoma to cause continuing damage remains with the person for life.
Be ready for regular eye examinations
Your eye specialist or optometrist will perform regular investigations to determine if your glaucoma is getting worse. These include measuring the pressure in the eye, a test of your side vision, and an examination of the optic nerve.
Follow your treatment exactly and stick with it
The person who has glaucoma, in which the optic nerve already has become damaged, will have to make some trade-offs. Using drops is a nuisance, but if one has the type of glaucoma that is going to get worse, and the glaucoma is being controlled with medications, either you use the drops or your glaucoma gets worse and your sight will deteriorate to a point where you will lose vision.
Compliance and persistence with your medication regimen is critical. Compliance is the term for following a medication schedule as prescribed by a doctor. Persistence is the term for sticking with it. Non-compliance is a leading cause of glaucoma blindness.
Ask your doctor questions
Expect answers that you can understand. Discuss your medications, possible side effects, proposed treatments, etc. Your doctor will help you understand your pressure, your type of glaucoma, and its needed treatment.
- Use your medications regularly as instructed.
- Know the names of your medicines and how often they are used.
- Inform your other doctors and health care specialists of your glaucoma. Provide them with a list of your medications.
- Agree on a certain frequency of check-ups with your doctor and stick to that schedule.
- Call your doctor if any unusual symptoms or eye problems arise.
- Discuss your glaucoma with family members and suggest that they have a check-up. Do not forget that glaucoma often runs in families.
- Join Glaucoma NZ to keep up-to-date with glaucoma information.
Living with Glaucoma
When you’re faced with the news that you have a medical condition, whether it’s glaucoma or something else, it’s natural to want to do something to reduce the impact or improve your outlook. One of the most common questions we’re asked is about lifestyle changes that might help your glaucoma.
The best treatment for your glaucoma will be prescribed by a medical professional. But there is also some evidence that changing our diet, the kind of exercise we take or even how we lie in bed might influence our eye pressure (also called intraocular pressure or IOP). We know glaucoma is made worse by high pressure in the eye or a reduced flow of blood to the optic nerve, so anything we do that decreases eye pressure or blood pressure may help.Find out more
Driving with Glaucoma
When they’re diagnosed with glaucoma, many people worry about losing their driving licence. In fact, only 12% of people with glaucoma lose their licence. If you’re diagnosed early and follow the advice of your doctor, particularly about using eye drops, the chances are that you’ll never lose your licence due to glaucoma.Find out more
LifeStyle, Diet and exercise
Intraocular pressure (IOP) lowering is the primary focus of glaucoma management. However, many people want to know what else they can do to reduce their glaucoma risk and about lifestyle changes that might help your glaucoma.Find out more
The best treatment for your glaucoma will be prescribed by a medical professional.Find out more
Given there is no simple cure for glaucoma, it is not surprising people may look to alternative therapies. Find out more about the facts and risks with ‘natural alternatives in place of mainstream treatment optionsFind out more
Find Your Support Network
Our support groups are an opportunity to share your experience with like minded people and get support from people who understand.