Did you know that over half of all Americans have cataracts by the time they are 70?
That’s quite an astonishing amount of people dealing with them, and it means that it’s likely that you will have cataracts one day as well. But how much do you know about this common disease?
If your answer is “not much,” then you’re in the right place. In this article, we’re breaking down what you need to know about cataracts.
Let’s get started.
What Causes Cataracts?
The reason that cataracts are usually considered an age-related disease is that the disease starts from wear and tear on the lens of our eyes. As we age, tissues and other materials around the eye begin to break down and clump together over the lens.
As the lens breaks down, it becomes more difficult for light to pass through the eye, which can make it harder to see clearly. This can mean blurry vision for early developing cataracts.
Although the main cause comes from age-related issues, it doesn’t mean that younger people can’t get them as well. Even children can get congenital cataracts, a type of cataract that a child can be born with or develop from other factors.
What Do Cataracts Do?
Now that we understand how cataracts develop, let’s discuss what they change in your vision. There are a few different types of cataracts, and all of them impact your vision in unique ways.
Left untreated, cataracts can make you legally or totally blind, but they tend not to develop quickly unless you have diabetes.
Most cataracts will cause you to have blurry vision and may even tint your eyes. Glare becomes more prominent and painful, and bright lights will have halos around them.
Not all of these symptoms come up at first. Sometimes blurriness is the only thing you’ll see, but your eye doctor will be able to tell you if you have any cataracts. Make sure to schedule eye appointments on a regular basis to ensure that you catch cataracts and other diseases before they start.
How to Treat Cataracts
At first, you can treat cataracts with a stronger prescription in your eyes, but eventually, surgery will be the only option for a permanent solution.
There’s usually not a huge rush to get rid of cataracts with surgery, but the sooner you choose to take them out, the easier the surgery is and the quicker you can recover from surgery.
In cataract surgery, an eye surgeon removes the cloudy lens from your eye and replaces it with an artificial lens. This is generally a safe process, and serious complications are rare. After surgery, it may take time to adjust, but your eye doctor will help you through the process.
It’s possible for untreated cataracts to become so developed that they are difficult to treat. This is called a hyper-mature cataract, and they can cause complications when going through surgery.
Catch Your Cataracts Today!
Now that you’ve read this article, you should have a basic idea of what cataracts are. Remember that, as you age, eye exams become more and more important for this reason and many others.
Want to learn more? Stick around. We’ll be celebrating cataract awareness with a new blog about cataracts each week. Click here to read one patient’s testimonial about cataract surgery.