June is Cataract Awareness Month, and here at Ighani Eye Care, we want to make sure your eyes are happy and healthy well into your golden years. One of the best ways to do that is to clear up any confusion about what cataracts are and how they may be affecting your day-to-day life.
What are Cataracts?
Cataracts are an inevitable part of aging. As we get older, the natural lens of our eye becomes clouded, therefore blurring and dulling the vibrancy of our vision.
Many may not realize that cataracts typically start to develop around age 50. Because cataracts take time to develop, symptoms almost always appear gradually and typically become noticeable around 60 years of age. This means patients may not notice how disruptive cataracts have become to their life until their symptoms become severe.
Symptoms of cataracts may include:
- Blurry or cloudy vision
- Bright colors appear dull
- Glare from headlights, lamps or even sunlight
- Halos around lights
- Poor night vision
- Frequent glasses prescription changes
- Difficulty reading in low light
Not every person who has cataracts experiences the same symptoms, so if you are experiencing any of these symptoms or other concerning vision problems, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our office at your earliest convenience.
Treatment Options for Cataracts
If cataracts go untreated for an extended amount of time, they can lead to a more dangerous daily life for older patients. For example, driving becomes less safe due to decreased visual acuity, therefore decreasing one’s independence earlier on. Additionally, people with cataracts are more likely to experience falls that lead to other serious medical complications. In fact, according to a 2018 study, the risk of falling decreased by 73% after treatment in both eyes.
Therefore, making sure you are maintaining a regular appointment schedule with your ophthalmologist is of the utmost importance. Once your cataracts develop enough, your ophthalmologist will likely suggest cataract surgery. During this procedure, your doctor will remove your eye’s natural lens and replace it with an artificial lens made of an acrylic polymer. This will last you the rest of your life and will never grow back.
Because the original lens has been entirely removed, cataract surgery has a near-100% success rate, according to the University of California, Irvine Health Center. You can read more about typical cataract procedures here.
Advances in Cataract Care that Lessen Need for Glasses in Later Years
As cataract treatment has advanced, options for the replacement lens put into your eye after your natural lens is removed have become more varied in order to give you even better vision than you had before your cataracts developed. These new premium lenses can be selected based on your lifestyle and what priorities you have for your vision.
For instance, if you read a lot and want to prioritize close-up vision, you may be recommended one lens. If you spend a significant time golfing and want to prioritize distance vision, you may be recommended a different lens. Read more about premium lens options available to you at Ighani Eye Care.
How to Get Started
If you are concerned about cataracts impacting your life and vision, we would love to meet you and address your concerns. To schedule an appointment, you can call us at 682.688.2020 or contact us online.