Early detection of cataracts can reduce the risk of further damage and allow for a good choice of treatment options. Our Mauldin optometrist, Dr. Cynthia Yeager, OD, will conduct an eye exam that will identify cataracts, which often develop slowly with no vision loss or pain. Some symptoms of cataracts are increased eye strain, difficulty driving at night, irritation caused by bright lights, blurry or double vision, fading colors, and frequent changes in your eyeglass prescription. Mostly common in older people, statistics show, by age 80, more than half of all Americans have a cataract or have had cataract surgery.
Specifically, a cataract is a clouding of the clear lens in the eye, making it appear as if you’re looking through a fogged-up window. The lens lies behind the iris and the pupil and works like a camera lens. In a normal eye, light passes through the lens to the retina and once it reaches the retina, is changed into nerve signals that are sent to the brain. The lens needs to be clear in order for the retina to receive a sharp image, but if it’s cloudy from a cataract the image will be blurry. Although most cataracts are related to aging, there are also other types of cataracts. Secondary cataracts can develop after surgeries for eye problems, such as glaucoma and in people with health problems, such as diabetes. Some babies are born with congenital cataracts or develop them in childhood. Frequently in both eyes, these cataracts are often so tiny they don’t affect vision but if they do, lens removal is an option. Traumatic cataracts may develop after an eye injury and radiation cataracts may develop after exposure to certain types of radiation. Using state-of-the-art technology, our Mauldin optometrist at Oneway Eyeglasses, will diagnose the type of cataract during a comprehensive eye examination and determine the best treatment for you.
Initially, stronger lighting, eyeglasses with magnifying lenses and anti-glare sunglasses can help you deal with cataracts but if impaired vision continues to interfere with your usual activities, our Mauldin optometrist might suggest surgery. Cataract surgery is generally a safe, effective procedure, which involves removing the cloudy lens and replacing it with an artificial lens. Cataract removal is one of the most common operations performed in the United States and is one of the safest and most effective types of surgery. In about 90 percent of cases, people who have cataract surgery have better vision afterward. Advanced technology lenses (multi-focal and accommodating lenses), which reduce your need for glasses following surgery, are also an exciting new option.