Understanding Cataracts: Symptoms And Treatment


You may notice that your bleach is not working anymore and your white clothing is not as bright as it once was. Your glasses are always dirty no matter how many times you wipe them off. The characters on the television are hard to make out, and headlights on the road at night wash out your vision.

What you do not notice is that you no longer read the paper and you move through your surroundings slower. You stop enjoying activities that require precision: crossword puzzles, bird watching, and sewing.

You have cataracts.

Cataracts, unlike other conditions, are usually a gradual decline in vision. This means that you will not notice how much you are not seeing until the cataracts become advanced. As you gradually get used to seeing less, you begin to lose interest in activities that once brought you joy.

How did you get them? Well, they are as natural as gray hair; eventually, we all get them. As you age, proteins begin to build up and clump together in the eye’s lens, preventing light from passing clearly through the lens and obscuring vision. These protein deposits are known as cataracts. Currently, more than half of all Americans over the age of 80 are affected by cataracts, according to the National Eye Institute (NEI).

Cataracts do not mean that you are unhealthy; they are a natural event that is not preventable. Thankfully, they are easily treatable. Cataracts are removable, and you can easily reclaim your mobility and connection to the world around you.

If you think that surgery is scary, you are not alone; it is. However, cataract surgery is one of the safest and most effective types of surgery performed in the United States today, with a very low rate of complication. Cataract surgery involves removing the lens in the eye and replacing it with an artificial lens.

After your cataract surgery, you will notice a difference mere hours or days after the surgery has been completed. Whites are whiter, the world is brighter, and you cannot believe how much your vision has changed for the better. The day after your surgery, you will likely return to your eye care center for a follow-up appointment to ensure that you are well, and your vision is improving. In most cases, you will eventually return to your eye care center only every six months, and then once a year for a routine checkup.

For more on this topic or other questions, contact Anne Arundel Eye Center. The staff is dedicated to making the best eye care accessible to everyone. Visit www.annearundeleyecenter.com or call 410-224-2010.


No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here