Your vision plays an important role in how you view the world around you. When something goes awry with your vision, it can make it difficult to interact and communicate. That’s why it’s best to catch vision problems early so you can take preventative measures to keep them from worsening. One of the most common vision problems to be aware of are cataracts, which is a leading cause of blindness in the United States. Today the team at Rancho Santa Fe Optometry will walk you through what a cataract is, what causes the condition, cataract symptoms to be aware of, and when to schedule an optometrist appointment for a vision test.
A cataract impacts the lens of the eye and causes it to become foggy. This can cause cloudy vision because your eyes work by allowing light to pass through the lens. When this lens turns from clear to cloudy, it prevents your brain from focusing on light in the same way. As a result, the eye(s) with a cataract experiences cloudy vision or total vision loss.
As our bodies age, the proteins of the lens of the eye begin to break down. In some instances, the broken-down proteins stay in the eye instead of being flushed out. When this happens, the buildup of proteins can create a cloudy haze over the lens of the eye. While cataracts can be caused through the process of aging and genetics, there are a few things that have been shown to speed up the formation of cataracts:
- Eye surgery
- Eye injury
- Lack of eye protection in the sun
If you feel as though you are in the early stages of cataracts, it’s best to schedule an eye doctor appointment sooner rather than later.
Nearly half of Americans will have cataracts by the age of 75 — it’s a natural part of the body’s aging process. The earlier your eye doctor provides a cataract diagnosis and treats your cataract, the quicker you can get back to going about life as normal. That’s why it’s important to be aware of common cataract symptoms so you can schedule an optometrist appointment as needed.
Common symptoms of cataracts are:
- Blurred, cloudy, or double vision– One of the most common symptoms of cataracts in the earliest stages is cloudy vision due to the buildup of proteins in the eye. As cataracts begin to spread throughout the lens, they can turn into blurry vision or even double vision.
- Halos around lights – When suffering from early-stage cataracts, many individuals report seeing a glare or a halo around bright lights at night or in dark settings.
- Vision discoloration – Those with cataracts often begin noticing yellow or brown hues in their vision at night, which eventually extend to the daytime as cataracts begin to worsen.
- Light sensitivity – Cataracts often make the individual very sensitive to light, which is heightened when driving at night and can cause severe headaches.
- Prescription changes – Because a cataract impacts the quality of the individual’s vision, they’ll often find that they are constantly updating their eyeglasses prescription due to their impaired eyesight.
These are only a few of the symptoms that may lead your eye doctor to a cataract diagnosis. Rancho Santa Fe Optometry provides diagnosis, treatment, and management of ocular diseases such as cataracts. Contact our team to schedule a comprehensive eye examination in the Rancho Santa Fe, California area.