In the United States, this month is Cataract Awareness Month. Did you know that cataracts are the most common culprit of deteriorating vision among those 55 and older? More so, more than half of the population who are 65 and older have some degree of cataract development.
So what exactly is a cataract? A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye; one which limits or distorts the how light enters into the eye. Inside the eye, the lens is held inside a sealed bag or capsule. As aging cells die, they become caught inside the capsule. As time goes on, more and more cells cease to function and accrue, and this causes the lens to get cloudy, making vision blurred or fuzzy. When it comes to most people, cataracts are a natural side effect of older age. Other dangers for developing a cataract include being overweight, diabetes, high blood pressure, family history, inflammation of the eye, steroid use, eye injuries and smoking.
In the initial phases of cataract development, stronger lights and eyewear can be implemented to minimize the vision issues you might be having. At a certain point, however, cataract surgery may be the solution to help your vision. It's worth nothing that more than 90 percent of patients who've had cataract surgery regain perfect or near perfect sight.
If you are in your fifties and having a hard time seeing in low light, it may be time to discuss cataracts with your eye doctor. The prognosis for cataracts is excellent, and we know you want to have good vision throughout your later years.