Cataracts FAQs From Our Allentown Optometrist
Cataracts are one of the most common eye conditions that affect older adults, yet many adults know little about cataracts and what can be done about them. Understanding cataracts, the symptoms of cataracts and how cataracts can be treated can help you take care of your vision in later adulthood.
What is a cataract?
A cataract is a cloudiness that affects the eyes directly behind the pupil.
Who can get cataracts?
Young children can be born with cataracts, particularly if their mother was infected with chickenpox or German measles during pregnancy. However, many people do not get cataracts until they are over 50 years old. Cataracts affect over half the population over age 65.
What can be done to prevent cataracts?
People who wish to prevent cataracts can make lifestyle changes to reduce their risk of this condition. A good diet, for example, is believed to reduce the risk of cataracts. Eating leafy greens, colorful nuts and taking in a lot of vitamin C are all good ways to reduce the risk of cataracts. Reducing sodium in the diet can also help if the patient has a high-sodium diet. Avoiding excess alcohol and shading your eyes from the sun when outdoors can also prevent cataracts.
It's also important to stay in regular contact with your eye doctor. Going to the optometry specialist on a regular basis for check ups and exams can help you identify potential problems early. This can help you maintain good vision.
What are the symptoms of cataracts?
At first, a cataract can be difficult to identify. Cataracts start small and grow larger and more pronounced over time. The first indications of a cataract may be a very light cloudiness over a certain part of the eye. As time goes on, other symptoms of a cataract include:
- Halos around light sources.
- Difficulty seeing at night.
- Fading of colors.
- Need for brighter lights for performing tasks such as reading.
Is there treatment available for someone with a cataract?
Yes. In fact, many people with cataracts never develop a severe enough cataract to warrant surgery, so many eye doctors will treat the symptoms and take a “wait and see” approach.
How can an optometrist treat my cataracts?
Commonly, an optometrist will prescribe glasses or contacts to treat the vision trouble the patient experiences as a result of the cataract. If the cataract becomes severe enough to interfere with quality of life or lifestyle, surgery is required to cure the problem.
What should you do if you suspect you have cataracts in Allentown PA?
If you believe that you might have cataracts in Allentown PA, the best way to get treatment for your cataracts is to visit your optometrist at Lehigh Valley Eye Care Associates. We can help you get the treatment you need for your cataracts.