What is happening to my vision?
Are you experiencing poor vision in low lighting? Do you have to turn on overhead lights when a lamp used to be sufficient?
How about the glare you’ve been seeing as a car approaches you while driving at night, or the halo that appears around car headlights or streetlights?
Do you have what appears to be “washed out” color vision, blurred vision, or are you seeing double images?
Low contrast sensitivity is another problem many people experience. Can you read black print on a blue background, or can you see the contour of a dark-colored car while driving at night?
Are you noticing a yellowing or darkening of things around you?
If you are experiencing any or all of these problematic symptoms, it’s time to see your vision specialist to be checked for cataracts.
The complications of untreated cataracts can be frustrating, debilitating, or even dangerous if advanced cataract vision is not diagnosed and treated.
What happens if you leave a cataract untreated?
If cataracts are left untreated, they will usually worsen over time and compromise your quality of life. If left untreated for a long period of time, cataracts can lead to permanent blindness.
Here are some untreated cataract complications:
- Cataracts can become “hyper-mature”. A hyper-mature cataract is one that has become so dense that surgical removal becomes risky. Early diagnosis and surgery, if indicated, can reduce the risk, and improve your quality of life.
- Cataracts left untreated can impair your vision so much that accidental injuries can occur.
- Cataracts are the number one cause of blindness in the world. Early diagnosis and removal at the right time can save your vision.
- Cataracts can increase your risk of glaucoma.
Cataracts can affect one or both eyes. Most people become aware of cataract related vision problems after the age of 60, but they can be diagnosed in younger people as well.
An eye injury or medical condition, such as diabetes or hypertension, can cause a cataract to develop.
What should you do if you suspect you have a cataract?
Your first step is to see your eye care professional and discuss your options.
You may be able to do some simple things such as wearing anti-glare sunglasses or obtaining a new prescription for contacts or glasses in the early stages of a cataract.
If you notice that you are having ongoing trouble with reading, driving, blurred vision, or activities of daily living, your eye doctor will probably suggest having cataract surgery.
Surgery is the only way to eliminate a cataract. Your eye doctor can explain the procedure to you and answer your questions regarding success rates and recovery time.
Although each case is different, many people report clearer vision within hours after cataract surgery.
Cataract surgery is one of the most common surgeries in the United States. The surgery is usually performed in an outpatient or same-day surgery facility, with minimal sedation required.
In most cases, you can resume your normal routine after a few days. The success rate is high, and the complication rate is low.
The best news is cataract surgery can give you your life back. Who doesn’t want to read, pursue hobbies, drive, and be as independent as possible? Don’t delay getting treatment for your cataracts. You’ll be glad you did!