Cataracts are a very common eye condition that mostly affects people in their 60s and older. In fact, according to the National Eye Institute, more than half of Americans will have cataracts (or surgery to correct them) by age 80. This age-related vision loss develops slowly but eventually interferes with your eyesight enough to require treatment.
What are Cataracts?
A cataract is when the lens of your eye becomes cloudy or opaque. This clouding results from proteins clumping together and distorting light as it enters your eye.
Anyone can develop cataracts regardless of gender, race, or ethnicity. While this condition can appear in people of all ages, it’s usually the result of getting older. There is also a genetic component, making you more likely to develop cataracts if someone in your family has them.
How are Cataracts Diagnosed?
Contact your eye doctor if you start noticing cataract symptoms. These include:
- Blurry vision
- Dull color vision and difficulty discerning colors
- Poor night vision
- Double vision
- Sensitivity to bright light
- Glare from the sun, headlights, and other light sources
- Frequently changing eyewear prescription
- Noticeably cloudy eyes
At your eye appointment, your optometrist will test for symptoms of cataracts and offer a diagnosis. Here are the methods used to detect cataracts:
- Ask questions about your medical history and what symptoms you’re experiencing
- Perform a visual acuity test to determine how well you see at different distances
- Conduct a visual field test to assess your peripheral vision
- Examine the lenses of your eyes to check for clouding and other signs of cataracts
How to Prevent Cataracts
Many risk factors for cataracts are out of your control, including your age and genetics. Still, you can do a few simple things to protect your eye health and lower the risk of cataracts later in life. Here are some cataract prevention tips your eye doctor may recommend:
- Quit smoking
- Avoid heavy alcohol consumption
- Wear protective goggles while playing sports, performing home repairs, working in the yard, or handling chemicals
- Wear sunglasses with UV protection
- Manage existing diabetes and hypertension
- Maintain a healthy weight to prevent chronic diseases
- Schedule routine eye exams
Arrange a Cataract Screening at Snead Eye Group
If you’re worried about cataracts, visit Snead Eye Group to have a vision specialist check your eyes. Our comprehensive eye exams can detect numerous conditions and diseases, a necessary step before starting treatment. If you are diagnosed with cataracts, rest assured that cataract surgery can correct your vision. This well-established procedure replaces your cloudy lens with an artificial one, improving your eyesight and quality of life. The team at Snead Eye Group is ready to help you see clearly again with safe, effective cataract surgery! To schedule a cataract screening, please call us at (239) 936-8686 or contact us online today. We have four convenient locations in Fort Myers, Naples, Bonita Springs, and Cape Coral, FL, to better serve you.