Insightsthe blog of Porter Hills
Living with Glaucoma
Shelly Teesdale, OTR/L
Home Health Occupational Therapist
Porter Hills Home Care
Watch the 13 On Your Side Senior Wellness Segment on this topic.
January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month
What is Glaucoma?
Glaucoma is a condition where the optic nerve is damaged in the eye. This damage occurs when there is an increase in fluid in the front part of your eye causing increased pressure which can lead to partial or permanent loss of vision. Testing for Glaucoma is typically done during a routine vision evaluation by an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist. Glaucoma is the number one cause of blindness for people over 60 years old.
If you have Glaucoma what can you do?
Ophthalmologists are able to diagnose and treat Glaucoma through medications (eye drops) and surgery to slow the disease, however if visual loss occurs it can not be reversed.
What can I do if I have visual loss?
Occupational Therapists can help teach you how to modify your environment if you have loss of vision.
- Adding contrast to the home environment. Glaucoma often causes problems with light sensitivity (glare) and not being able to discriminate among shades of the same or similar colors.
- colored lenses to glasses
- contrast strips of tape to stair edges and shower/tub
- Sight aids
- use of magnifiers
- computer readers
- Reducing clutter and simplifying your environment
- and always keep things in the same place (drawer/cupboard)
- Good lighting in the home
- night lights
- automatic light switches
With a few home modifications you can continue to LIVE and participate in activities you enjoy most.
Talk to your doctor if you live with glaucoma or other vision impairment to see if you could benefit from an Occupational Therapist.
Porter Hills Home Care, In-home Rehabilitation
Our in-home rehabilitation services allow for continued medical treatment in a comfortable, familiar environment. Our therapists work with physicians to develop a plan that will meet the rehabilitative needs of our patients so they can get back on the road to recovery, or maximize independence when managing a chronic illness.
- Re-train for self-care skills such as feeding, dressing, bathing, grooming, personal hygiene and toileting
- Fabricate splints and casts for positioning, protection, spasticity and range-of-motion
- Assess safety conditions in the home and needs for adaptive equipment
- Improve fine motor coordination
- Educate the patient about joint protection and energy conservation
- Prepare patient to resume day-to-day activities
- Utilize specialty treatments/adaptations for visual impairments