Each June, eye care professionals in America commit to raising awareness about cataracts. Did you know that cataracts are the most common cause of deteriorating vision among those 55 and older? Actually, more than half of all people who are 65 or older have at least some cataract development. As stated by the National Eye Institute, by age 80, more than 50 percent of all Americans will have either had cataract surgery, or will have a cataract.
So what exactly is a cataract? A cataract is like a veil in front of the lens in the eye; one which obstructs or changes the how light enters into the eye. Inside the eye, the lens is contained in a sort of sac or capsule. When more mature cells break down, they get trapped within the capsule. As time goes on, more and more cells follow suit and accrue, which causes the lens to get hazy, leading to vision that is fuzzy or unclear. For most people, cataracts are a natural result of aging. Other possible dangers for developing a cataract include being overweight, diabetes, abnormal blood pressure, family medical history, inflamed eyes, ongoing steroid use, eye injuries and smoking.
In the first phases of cataract development, stronger lights and glasses could be implemented to minimize the vision problems you might be having. At some point, though, cataract surgery may be necessary in order to fix your vision. It's worth nothing that more than 9 out of 10 patients who have undergone cataract surgery recover excellent sight.
If you are in your sixties and experiencing low vision, you ought to discuss cataracts with your optometrist. There are treatments available for cataracts, and we know you want to have total visibility throughout your golden years.