Cataracts – Virginia Beach
What Are Cataracts?
Cataracts usually form slowly and cause few symptoms until they noticeably block light. Cataracts prevent light from being focused clearly on the retina, which will most likely impair vision. Cataracts sometimes remain small and unnoticeable. But with more developed cataracts, it’s like viewing the world through a foggy window. Symptoms can include halos around lights, difficulty with night vision, cloudy vision, seeing faded colors, sensitivity to light, double vision in one eye and frequent changes in your contacts or glasses prescriptions.
Click on the image below to view a simulation on how the development of cataracts affects your vision.
Who Develops Cataracts?
Cataracts are a natural part of the aging process, so anyone, typically over the age of 40, could develop cataracts. The most evident cause of cataracts is aging of course, but there are other factors such as smoking, diabetes, long term use of steroid medication, high blood pressure, obesity and genetics or family history of cataracts.
Because cataracts can develop slowly over years and impair your vision over time, you stand the risk of not realizing how your day to day activities are affected by compromised vision. Cataracts can be diagnosed and treated early on with standard vision exams. Regular eye exams are one of the most important things you can do to ensure early diagnosis of eye disease and maintaining healthier eyes longer.
What happens if cataracts go untreated?
The clouded areas of your lens can become larger and denser, causing your sight to become much worse. This could take anywhere from a few months to many years. If untreated, eventually the entire lens can cloud over and cause blindness.
Questions for Your Eye Doctor
Having a basic understanding of the procedure beforehand will help facilitate the conversation, as will having some prepared questions such as:
- Having a basic understanding of the procedure beforehand will help facilitate the conversation, as will having some prepared questions such as:
- How advanced are my cataracts?
- Which type of intraocular lens (IOL) would I benefit most from?
- Will any of my current prescriptions or over-the-counter drugs complicate the surgery or recovery process?
- What will my vision be like after recovery?
- What is the post-surgery follow-up process?