Understanding Glaucoma and Aging: A Critical Concern in the Philippines
Glaucoma, a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, poses serious implications for aging individuals—especially when left untreated can result in blindness. With the aging population in the Philippines, the disease has surged in incidence urging for comprehensive understanding and attention to this chronic eye condition.
II. The Reality of Glaucoma in the Philippines
Recent data shows a concerning number of seniors in the Philippines affected by Glaucoma. Poor awareness and misconceptions often result in delayed diagnosis and treatment. Due to escalating costs of healthcare and lack of specialist provision, managing this disease has become a significant public health concern, affecting a significant portion of the country’s silver population.
III. Prevention of Glaucoma
Although, the disease is incurable, specific steps can be undertaken to reduce the risk or control the disease progression. Regular eye examinations are recommended, particularly for seniors above the age of 60, as early detection is crucial for treating the condition effectively. Lifestyle changes like maintaining a healthy diet, regular exercise, limiting caffeine intake, and avoiding smoking, can go a long way in reducing the likelihood of developing Glaucoma.
IV. Treatment Options Available in the Philippines
A variety of Glaucoma medications available in local pharmacies can help prevent further damage. These mainly include eye drops and oral medications that control eye pressure. Surgical treatments offer greater hope for advanced cases. Procedures, such as laser trabeculoplasty, trabeculectomy, and drainage implants, improve the fluid flow in the eyes and lower eye pressure. However, these options can be costly and are not covered adequately by public health insurance, pushing some to seek overseas treatment options.
V. Necessary Support for Seniors with Glaucoma
Managing Glaucoma requires support both from families and communities. The importance of understanding and providing needed care for seniors with this condition cannot be understated. Caregivers, in this context, need to be well informed about the disease and its management. Fortunately, there are support groups and organizations in the Philippines offering support and can complement medical treatments.
With the rising concern of Glaucoma in relation to aging in the Philippines, it is vital to initiate conversations around its prevention and control. Encouraging regular eye check-ups, improving socio-economic support for the aged, and strengthening health-care systems for early detection and treatment are musts. Let’s remember, the vision of our senior citizens is invaluable, and must be preserved with great care and respect.