The team at Specsavers in Alfreton are supporting National Glaucoma Awareness Week (6-12 June) by encouraging all locals who know of glaucoma in their family to book in for an eye examination.

Research has shown that those with a family history of glaucoma sufferers – in particular close family members - are up to four times more likely to develop the sight-threatening condition than those without (IGA Members research, 2014).

Easy detection

Three simple tests carried out by optometrists at Specsavers Alfreton can detect signs of glaucoma, one of the leading causes of preventable sight loss in the UK: observing the main nerve in the eye, measuring the pressure in the eye (puff test) and checking peripheral vision.

Eugene Grant, store director, says: ‘According to IGA research, an estimated 600,000 people in the UK have glaucoma, but at least half haven’t been diagnosed. Many are unaware that glaucoma can be hereditary and signs go unnoticed, especially in the early stages when there are often no symptoms.

‘Early detection means the condition can be monitored and future damage to vision minimised, which is why we’re asking everyone in Alfreton to make sure they have their eyes tested, especially if their siblings or parents have glaucoma.’

Raising awareness

During National Glaucoma Week 2016, the International Glaucoma Association launch the Family Foresight campaign, supported by Specsavers, which aims to raise awareness of family history linked with glaucoma.

Russell Young, CEO of the International Glaucoma Association says: ‘We’re pleased to be working with Specsavers to highlight the importance of regular eye health checks. As glaucoma is not well understood, many people could be irretrievably damaging their vision without realising it. Detection, diagnosis and treatment can help to save vision.’

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