Do you have cataracts? Congratulations! The only people who do not get cataracts are those who don’t live long enough. You made it! Unlikely many other parts of aging, this can be good news. Why? With modern technology, surgeons are now able to not only fix cataracts but also potentially fix other vision problems. Watch the video and learn more about cataracts, cataract surgery, and the other visual problems that can be addressed.
What is a cataract?
A cataract is a clouding of the natural lens of the eye. All eyes have small natural lenses, about the size of an M&M that sits behind the iris – the colored part of the eye. When we are young, the natural lens is clear and able to flex. The flexing allows us to be viewing at a distance and then almost instantaneously read something at near.
Over time, this lens first becomes stiff. It is unable to flex as well and thus we lose our ability to see things at near. People at this stage frequently need to wear reading glasses or bifocals. If you are nearsighted, you could need to take off your glasses to see up-close.
With this stiffening, the lens also begins to lose its clarity. At first, this can be noticed by needing more light for reading and night vision begins to deteriorate. The lens will continue to cloud to the point where it affects your daily activities. At this point, the lens is considered a cataract. The cataract will continue to deteriorate your vision until you decide it is time for cataract surgery.
What are the symptoms?
Use the arrows to see how cataracts might be affecting your vision.
Fading or yellowing of colors
Trouble seeing at night
Seeing "halos" around lights
Light and glare sensitivity
What is astigmatism?
Astigmatism is an imperfection in the curvature of your cornea – the clear front window of your eye. Approximately 1/3 of population has visually significant astigmatism. Astigmatism usually causes vision to be blurred or distorted to some degree at all distances. During cataract surgery, we now have the option of improving two conditions at the same time – the cataract and your astigmatism. Watch the video to learn more and ask your doctor if it is an option for you.
What is presbyopia?
Presbyopia is when your eyes gradually lose the ability to see things clearly up close. As we age, the flexible lens inside our eyes stiffen. When wearing distance glasses, this stiffening hampers our ability to see up close. Through this same stiffening process, the lens also becomes cloudy. The cloudiness is what we call a cataract. Watch the video to learn more about presbyopia. If you would like to be less glasses dependent when reading, ask your doctor if presbyopia reduction is an option for you.