More than 2.5 million Canadians live with cataracts. This disease is a leading cause of vision loss in Canada and develops commonly as we age. The crystalline lens that sits just behind the front of the eye focuses vision by changing shape, but with age this lens can become stiff and clouded. Clouding prevents light from reaching the retina and obscures vision. Eye care professionals may compare this to the strain of looking through a dirty car windshield. Cataracts are a natural part of aging, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with them. We can arrange referrals for treatment for cataracts to restore your vision to its former clarity.
Do you suspect that you may be suffering from cataracts? Symptoms include:
While anyone can develop cataracts, there are a number of risk factors that increase your odds, including:
Fortunately, surgery to remove cataracts is extremely common and effective. In fact, it is one of the safest, most successful procedures performed today. According to the CNIB, more than 95% of patients report improved vision following the surgery.
At Eye Care Centre, your Optometrist will conduct regular eye exams to monitor the progression of cataracts carefully. If surgery is deemed necessary, your Optometrist will refer you to an experienced ophthalmologist for cataract removal.
Many factors determine whether a person will develop cataracts, and ongoing studies reveal more each day about how we can treat and even prevent this disease. Scheduling an appointment with your Eye Care Centre Optometrist helps in two ways: your Optometrist can offer recommendations on good nutrition and vitamins, and can offer tips for protecting your eyes from harmful UV rays while outdoors. In addition, the exam may reveal early signs of the disease, enabling you to take a proactive approach to your treatment.
While cataracts are unusual in children, they are not unheard of. Between one and 15 in 10,000 children are born with cataracts, a condition that is known as congenital cataracts and is responsible for a significant amount of blindness in children worldwide. Children should undergo regular eye examinations to rule out vision problems and eye disease.
Once a cataract has been discovered, you will want to consult with your Optometrist regularly to track its progress and determine how it is affecting your vision. In the beginning and intermediary stages, new glasses and magnification aids can restore some of your visual functioning. However, as the disease progresses your Optometrist may recommend surgery to remove the cataract. You will be referred to an eye surgeon who will work in tandem with your Optometrist to provide pre and post operative care. Eye Care Centre is committed to helping you maintain and regain your best vision throughout your life.
For more information about cataracts and cataract removal surgery, see: www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/cataracts.htm