It's June, which means it's Cataract Awareness Month. Did you know that cataracts are the main culprit of vision loss among patients who are over 55 years old? In fact, more than 50% of the population 65 or older have at least some cataract development. According to the National Eye Institute, by age 80, in excess of 50% of all Americans will either have a cataract or had cataract surgery.
So what exactly is a cataract? A cataract is a fogging of the eye's lens; one which blocks or affects the how light enters into the eye. Inside the eye, the lens is contained in a sealed bag or capsule. As soon as aging cells die, they end up trapped within the capsule. After some time, more and more cells die and assemble, causing the lens to cloud, which makes eyesight fuzzy or unclear. Cataracts are a natural side effect of aging. Other risk factors for developing a cataract include abnormal blood pressure, smoking and eye injuries.
In the first stages of cataract development, stronger lights and eyewear may be used to reduce the vision issues you may be experiencing. At some point, though, cataract surgery might be required to improve your eyesight. It's worth nothing that more than 9 out of 10 patients who have undergone cataract surgery recover perfect or near perfect sight.
If you are in your fifties and experiencing low vision, call us to discuss cataracts with your eye doctor. Cataracts are treatable, and we know you want to have total visibility throughout your golden years.