What are Cataracts?

What are Cataracts?

 

A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s natural lens and is most common in elderly people.  When you suspect that you might have it, you can ask yourself a couple of questions as to whether you have any of the following cataract symptoms:

  • Are my eyes looking a bit yellowish or brownish?

  • Are my eyes sensitive to light (lamp, car headlights, sunlight, etc)?

  • Am I troubled by glare during the day?

  • Is my vision becoming cloudy or filmy even though my glasses are still new?

  • Is my vision worse at night? Am I trying to avoid driving at night?

  • Do I feel like I need stronger/weaker glasses?

  • Do I have double vision?

  • Do I see colours not as vibrant as they used to be?

 

If you tick ‘yes’ to any of the above, you should inform your optometrist in your next eye test.

 

A lot of people around the age of 50 & 60 may have been told that there’s ‘a little bit of aging’ in their eyes.  Many of them do not require immediate surgery but the optometrist may be able to offer suggestions to slow down the progression, e.g.

  • Dietary intakes of vitamin E (sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach),  lutein and zeaxanthin (spinach, kale, green and leafy veggies)

  • Antioxidant vitamins e.g. vitamin C

  • Omega-3 fatty acids (fish and fish oil)

 

Well, do I need to have my cataract treated or removed?

 

Ask yourself, “Is my vision getting worse? Do I need to drive a lot and it’s getting glary during the day and blurry at night?  If I tend to do a lot of reading either for leisure or for work, are the words becoming too blurry no matter what strength of reading glasses my optometrist has prescribed?  Overall, is my vision bothering me and disturbing my daily life?”

 

Ask your optometrist, “What do you think my vision issues are? Do I need cataract surgery soon or can I wait a bit?”

 

Good communication is essential between people and their optometrist.  So let your optometrist know how well you want to be able to see and they will discuss the options with you.

 

Eileen Hao
Optometrist at 1001 Optical