Cataracts are a clouding of the lens of the eye, which prevents passage of light into the eye. Cataract is the leading cause blindness in the world effecting around 24 million Americans.
Cataracts can affect anyone, although most people do not show symptoms until at least the age of 40. Heredity, disease, eye injury and smoking could cause cataracts to develop at an earlier age.
Symptoms of cataract include:
- Blurred vision, double vision, ghost images, and the sense of something clouding the eye.
- Lights seem too dim when reading.
- Visible changes in the eyes including a milky or yellowish spot in the pupil
The solution to cataract is cataract surgery, which requires an ophthalmologist to remove the deteriorated lens and replace it with an artificial lens called an intraocular lens (IOL). This surgery is one of the safest and most effective with a success rate of 95%.
Some ways to delay the progression of cataracts include avoiding smoking, reducing exposure to UV rays, eating healthy foods, and wearing proper eye protection to avoid eye injury.
Early detection and treatment of cataracts is critical to preserving sight. If you think you might be having cataract symptoms, check-up with your ophthalmologist the soonest possible!