A Short Guide to Cataracts

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Sight is one of our most valuable senses. It allows you to view the world around you, you can watch out for danger, and it plays a significant role in developing relationships. After all, one of the features many people notice first is the eyes. Unfortunately, cataracts are an eye condition that affects the vision and causes it to deteriorate. Here is a short guide to cataracts and what you can do about them.

What Are Cataracts?

Cataracts describe the condition where the lens of your eye becomes cloudy in areas. Most people are born with clear lenses and then develop cataracts as they get older, although some children can be born with them. Age-related cataracts usually develop in adults between 40 and 50 years old, and this is when the lens of the eye begins to ‘frost’ over and develop cloudy patches. As you age, protein can build up in the eye, and this is what causes cataracts. Age-related cataracts may not affect vision until people get older. Besides age, cataracts can develop due to illnesses like diabetes due to an injury to the eye or due to hereditary reasons.

Symptoms

People who have cataracts may experience blurry or distorted vision. They may also suffer from double vision, and colors may appear faded. Other symptoms include light sensitivity and seeing halos around lights. Cataracts are a progressive disorder, and many people do not actually realize they have this condition during the early stages. This is why it is vital that you schedule regular eye examinations at an optician. Opticians and optometrists are well-equipped to identify cataracts early. Once identified, they can provide sound advice about how you can treat them before they develop into something more serious.

Cataract Surgery

Any form of eye surgery may sound scary, but cataract surgery is actually pretty straightforward. The procedure usually takes under an hour, and it is often carried out under local anesthetic, this means there is no overnight stay, and most people are able to go home straight after the surgery. People with cataracts in both eyes have the option of getting them treated on the same day, or waiting until one is recovered before they treat the second eye. The operation can involve a small incision in the eye to remove the affected lens and replace it with an artificial one. Cataract lenses vary depending on the place where you get the surgery done. The type of lenses you pick can affect how well you see after the operation.

Aftercare

Although vision should be restored after a few hours, it is normal to have watery eyes and blurred or double vision. You may also experience a sense of grittiness in the eye too. These side effects usually go away after a few days, but to help your eyes recover faster, you can use an eye shield at night, wear sunglasses outdoors and avoid doing strenuous activities. In addition, try not to rub your eyes or let any foreign substances, such as shampoo and conditioner, touch the eyes.

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