Non-surgical treatments for glaucoma include medications, such as eye drops or pills, consistent exercise and relaxation techniques. Treatment methods for glaucoma vary depending on the severity of the disease. Early onset glaucoma can typically be treated without surgery.
Medical eye drops used to treat glaucoma reduce eye pressure. These eye drops are absorbed into the eye and bloodstream. For the best results, a patient should close his eye for a minute or two after applying the eye drops while applying slight pressure to the corner of the eye by the nose. This closes the tear duct in that area and minimizes the drug's bloodstream absorption.
Pills may be used instead of or in addition to eye drops. Depending on the type of pill, it may reduce fluid production in the eyes or cause the fluid to drain more effectively.
Exercise, such as riding a bicycle or walking briskly, can reduce eye pressure in some cases. It can also help prevent diabetes and high blood pressure, both of which are glaucoma risk factors. Relaxation techniques, such as meditation, may also reduce eye pressure.
Glaucoma can cause permanent vision loss if it is not treated properly. A patient should inform the doctor of any medications he is already taking, and follow his treatment plan to manage glaucoma. Symptoms may not be noticeable in early onset glaucoma, so the patient should be consistent in treatment whether he has symptoms or not.