Surgery for any reason is never fun, so it’s natural to wonder if you really need to have cataract surgery, and if so, why. Before we get into the why let’s first go over a few basic points.
What Is A Cataract?
A cataract is a protein buildup in the lens that causes cloudiness, directly affecting your vision. This protein buildup in a formerly clear natural lens usually develops with age and is the leading cause of blindness. Cataracts are most often related to aging and are extremely common in seniors. In fact, by age 80, more than 50 percent of Americans will either have cataracts or already have had surgery to correct them.
Causes Of Cataracts
Researchers warn of the dangers of smoking and diabetes, as both have been tied to the development of cataracts. However, these factors alone are not associated with cataracts, as many people develop cataracts as they age even if they have never smoked and are in perfect health. It’s best, however, to avoid smoking and take care of your health, hopefully avoiding diabetes, as both can increase your cataracts risk.
- Faded colors
- Cloudy vision
- Blurry vision
- Glares from bright lights
- Seeing halos around lights
- Diminished or poor night vision
- Double Vision
Why Should I Have Cataract Surgery?
Early symptoms of cataracts can be treated with prescription eyeglasses. You can also use magnifying lenses for reading and should wear glare resistant and UVB sunglasses to protect your eyes. As long as these treatment options work for you and your vision, you do not have to have surgery. It’s when these measures are no longer enough to correct your vision that you should talk to your eye doctor at Loden Vision Centers and schedule a consultation with our office to discuss cataract surgery.
If your cataracts are affecting your vision and related vision loss has begun to interfere with your normal activities like watching TV or even driving, surgery avoidance can lead to total loss of vision. There is usually quite some time in between developing a cataract and significant vision reduction. In most cases, it’s perfectly fine to delay your procedure, but it is best to talk to your doctor and stay informed.
Cataract surgery usually takes about an hour and is virtually painless. In fact, the majority of cataract patients opt to remain awake for the procedure. If this is the route you choose, you will be given an anesthetic to numb the nerves in your eye and around your eye area.
During the procedure, your surgeon will remove the cataract and insert an intraocular lens (IOL) to restore your vision. Most patients can even go home the day of their procedure. You will, however, be required to have someone else drive you home.
How Soon Will I See Normally After Surgery?
Your vision will most likely be blurry following your surgery, so while you are clear to return to most everyday activities, it is your surgeon who will dictate when it’s safe for you to get behind the wheel again. After you are fully healed, it is possible you may need prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses to correct a refractive error such as nearsightedness or farsightedness.
If you have additional questions about cataract surgery, please schedule a consultation with Loden Vision Centers!