7 Things You Should Know About Cataracts

Older couple walking in garden

Are you worried about getting cataracts? Were you recently diagnosed with cataracts?

As we age, cataracts become a common condition we deal with. By the age of 80, about half of our peers will have cataracts.

But it is still possible to develop cataracts earlier in life too. Keep reading for 7 things you should know about cataracts!

1. Cataracts Form on The Lens of the Eye

One common misconception is that cataracts form on your eye. They actually form in your eye on the lens.

Cataracts cloud the lens in your eye. A lot of people think that this clouding is on your eye. The clouding occurs when your lens starts to break down when it is typically clear. Cataracts can take years to fully impact your vision and life.

2. Aging is Not the Only Risk Factor

While most cases of cataracts are age-related, age is not the only cause of cataracts. Developing cataracts have also been connected to eye injuries, radiation, sun exposure, and as the result of having another eye surgery.

Repeated exposure to bright lights can be linked to speeding up the process of proteins in the lens breaking down. Rarely, babies are born with cataracts.

3. Cataract Can Be in Just One Eye

It is more common to have cataracts in both eyes, but it is possible to have cataracts in only one eye. This is especially common if one eye experienced an injury or serious trauma.

The injured eye could develop a cataract and not the other one.

4. Cataracts Can Affect Your Eyes in Different Ways

It is possible to have cataracts and have 20/20 vision. Some patients have with cataracts have blurry vision all the time.

Other patients with cataracts may experience symptoms only in specific circumstances. Some patients may have good vision during the day and then see halos around lights driving at night.

5. Cataract Surgery is Not Always Needed

Just because you have cataracts does not mean you need to have surgery. In the beginning, cataracts will not affect your vision very much. There is no need to get cataract surgery at this point.

Cataracts take years to develop and patients decide to get surgery only when they get worse. There is no risk of delaying surgery unless it impacts your life.

6. Cataract Surgery is Safe

Cataract surgery is a very common and safe procedure. The success rate is very high, so it is considered one of the safest medical procedures to undergo.

During the procedure, anesthetic eye drops are used to numb your eyes, so there is no pain. The eye’s natural lens is then removed and replaced with an artificial lens or IOL. There are also no stitches to worry about.

After surgery, you will have to let your eyes recover. You cannot complete any strenuous activities for at least a month.

It will take some time for your vision to become clear, but you will notice improvements the day of.

7. You Can Reduce Your Risk of Developing Cataracts Early

There’s no way to guarantee you’ll never develop cataracts. What you can do is reduce your risk of developing them early on. To do this, you should wear sunglasses while outside. You should also eat foods rich in antioxidants and live a healthy lifestyle.

This includes not smoking, reducing your alcohol consumption, and not developing diabetes. Being healthy is the best thing you can do for your eyes and health!

Do you think you have cataracts? Getting a comprehensive eye exam is the only way to find out. Schedule a cataract screening at SightMD in Long Island, NY today!

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