Cataracts are the most common cause of vision problems and affect many older men and women. It may not be possible to prevent cataracts from forming, but thankfully, they’re easy to treat. At Great Neck Opticians in Great Neck, New York, expert optometrists Yelena Pinkhasova, OD, and Eleonora Tamayeva, OD, can help you adapt to early-stage cataracts and provide referrals for surgery. If you’re experiencing blurry, cloudy vision, schedule an appointment online or over the phone.
Your eyes have lenses, located between your irises and pupils, that function just like the lens of a camera. They focus light, allowing you to see things clearly both up close and from far away. Cataracts cause these lenses to essentially go “out of focus,” causing your vision to become blurry, foggy, or cloudy.
Cataracts can make reading and watching television difficult. You may struggle to drive at night or notice that lights appear to have halos around them. Often, people with untreated cataracts find that the world looks less bright or vivid than it once did.
Cataracts usually affect people age 60 and older. However, younger people may also develop cataracts if they have a history of eye injuries or certain genetic conditions that affect their eyes. Most people have cataracts in both eyes, but one cataract may be more advanced than the other, so vision is worse in that eye.
The lenses in your eyes are made up of water and protein. In healthy eyes, these proteins are precisely arranged so you can see clearly. As you get older, these proteins may form clumps, blocking light from reaching your eyes and resulting in a cloudy appearance.
When your vision becomes cloudy from a cataract, it’s because the clump of protein is directly blocking your vision. You’re actually looking at the protein.
Cataracts develop gradually over time. In their early stages, you may not realize they’re there, because they cover only a tiny part of your eye, and you can adjust. Cataracts are a problem when they’re too big to ignore.
There’s no way to prevent cataracts because doctors don’t know exactly what causes proteins in your eyes to break down and clump together with age. However, regular eye exams at Great Neck Opticians, including cataract screenings, can ensure you catch cataracts in their early stages and you get the treatment you need.
Surgery is the only way to get rid of a cataract. You may not need surgery right away, however. If your cataract is still small, you can adapt to changes in your vision by:
Your optometrist closely monitors your condition to determine if you need surgery. If your cataract is blocking your vision, your optometrist can provide you with a referral to an ophthalmologist. Cataract surgery is a safe, effective, and quick procedure that involves replacing the cloudy natural lens with an artificial one.
To get help with cloudy, blurred vision, or to learn more about cataract treatment, schedule an appointment at Great Neck Opticians online or over the phone.