Have you or a family member been recently told you have cataracts? You may feel confused and unsure about where to start.
Do you need cataract surgery? What is a cataract? Keep reading to get answers to your FAQs about cataracts!
Q: What is a cataract?
A clouding of the lens of the eye. As a cataract develops, it creates
Q. How does a cataract form?
A cataract forms when proteins in the lens of the eye migrate to the center of the eye. Once in the center, they slowly begin clumping together and impede vision.
Q. What causes cataracts?
There are many factors but the most common risk factors are aging, diabetes, smoking, and UV exposure.
Q. What are the symptoms of cataracts?
Signs and symptoms of cataracts include:
- Blurred vision
- Colors appearing dulled or muted
- Double vision
- Clouded vision
- Becoming sensitive to glare from bright lights
- Seeing halos or rainbows around bright lights
Cataracts can also affect your night driving. Many patients with cataracts struggle with seeing far, making close up tasks impossible. This can include tasks like reading, or relaxing with a favorite television show.
Q. Can I prevent cataracts?
Cataracts are not preventable. But there are risk factors that you can avoid to lower your chances of early development.
Q. How can I lower my risk for developing cataracts?
Since there is no way to prevent cataracts, the best you can do is try to lower your risks of developing them early. This depends on the person but to lower your risks, try these tips:
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Eating a diet full of proper nutrients and whole foods
- Proper management of diabetes if already diagnosed
- Limiting alcohol
- Always wearing UV protective sunglasses when outdoors (adding a sunhat also helps!)
- Never smoking
- Quitting with the help of your doctor if you are a current smoker
Q. How prevalent are cataracts?
By the age of 80, more than half of Americans will already have had cataract surgery or have a cataract. The odds of you developing a cataract is much more likely as you get
Q. When do cataracts tend to develop?
Cataracts are often referred to as an ‘age-related’ disease, but the term is a bit misleading. Many patients actually start developing cataracts in their forties.
But the process of a cataract developing can take years, if not decades! Most patients with a cataract don’t realize they have one until it’s impeding their vision.
Q. If I can’t prevent cataracts, what can I do?
See your eye doctor for regular eye examinations. Early diagnosis and treatment
Q. How are cataracts treated?
When you treat cataracts, you may start by wearing prescription glasses. You should also wear protective eyewear outdoors.
As your cataract continues developing, you will need to consider cataract surgery. Cataract surgery becomes necessary when other treatment options are no longer effective.
At this point, your vision has become impeded and everyday tasks are much more difficult.
Q. What happens if cataracts are not treated?
Without treatment, cataracts can lead to total loss of vision. There’s no reason to let this happen! Cataract surgery is a safe and reliable procedure that leads to clear vision.
Want to deal with your cataracts? Schedule a cataract appointment with Stahl Eyecare Experts in the Long Island area!