A cataract is an eye condition in which the lens of the eye becomes progressively opaque or clouded, resulting in impaired vision. While this ocular problem develops most frequently in seniors, cataracts can develop at any age. If the clouding is so severe that it impacts a patient’s ability to perform activities such as reading or driving, cataract surgery is often recommended.

Risk Factors

There are several risk factors which are associated with the development of cataracts such as:

  • Age
  • Eye trauma
  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Diabetes
  • Steroid medication
  • A family history of cataracts

Cataract Symptoms

Cataracts tend to form gradually and may display few or no symptoms until they noticeably affect your vision. That is why it’s very important to schedule regular eye exams and watch out for signs such as:

  • Blurred/double vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Poor night vision
  • Sudden changes in eyeglass prescription
  • Problems with glare (such as from the headlights of a car or street light)

Cataract Diagnosis

Because cataracts rarely produce any visible symptoms in their early stages, it is crucial for patients, especially those above the age of 40, to schedule dilated eye exams at least once every two years.

During such a vision test, our eye specialists will closely examine your lens for any signs of cataracts. These eye exams include:

  • A thorough health and medical history checkup
  • A visual acuity test
  • A visual field test
  • A comprehensive eye exam
  • Analysis of your visual history

Cataract Treatment Options

Depending on the severity of your cataract symptoms, our optometrists may recommend simply managing the condition with an updated eyeglass prescription or changes in your contact lenses.

But as the cataracts develop and begin to impair your ability to engage in regular activities such as driving and reading, cataract surgery is the most effective treatment option. This involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial one.

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